Residents reacquainted as Sykesville celebrates 19th annual Fall Festival SOUTHWEST -- Mount Airy * Woodbine * Taylorsville * Winfield

October 05, 1992|By Mary Gail Hare | Mary Gail Hare,Staff Writer

The only tires on Main Street Saturday were on baby strollers, as families wheeled their youngest around town for the 19th annual Sykesville Fall Festival.

Multicolored rows of mums, hay bales and pumpkins replaced cars along the curbs. The savory smells of pit beef, fresh lemons and potpourri filled the air as thousands of people reacquainted themselves with their neighbors and their town.

Visitors heard, "Is that your new baby?" and "What do you think about Perot?"

"I need a 'wide load' sign," said a woman dressed in a wide hoop skirt for the Civil War re-enactment. "The war is starting at 1:30, everybody."

Children lined up across Main Street, eager to play games and win prizes.

"We got several games together for the kids this year," said Terri Reyes. "They are getting a real kick out of them. Usually, they don't have much to do but eat and follow their parents."

After several valiant tries, 4-year-old Josh Pickett finally tossed a small football through goal posts painted on plywood.

"Touchdown!" screamed his cheering section.

When the little boy chose a whistle for his prize, his neighbor, Sara Sayers, laughed and said, "Your mother will love that."

Ms. Sayers said she brought several area children to the festival, which she has never missed.

"I'm just a typical Sykesvillian who enjoys Main Street shopping."

The day began at 7 a.m. with a pancake breakfast at Baldwin's Restaurant. At 9 a.m., 36 runners joined a 5K race around town. Bob Hugg outran the men and Valerie Guilfoil was the the first woman to finish.

As the racers sped by, the women from St. Paul's Church were filling the bake table with apple dumplings, cakes and pies.

"They went like Grant through Richmond," said Martha Forthman of the dumplings. "We sold out of 75 in 90 minutes; one buyer took 20 right off."

Visitors who missed this week's dumplings will have one more chance at Cooper Park this Saturday, when the town Recreation Department plans a Festival in the Park. The women plan to set up another baking assembly line Friday and produce dozens more.

Shoppers scarfed up town memorabilia, too. Pale gold Christmas balls, picturing the train station and Town House, and $10 T-shirts, with town logos, were selling at a fast pace.

Many children sported fluorescent-colored sunglasses, with Historic Sykesville printed on the stems.

"I guaranteed good weather and we got it," said Dick Norris, president of the Sykesville Business Association, which sponsored the daylong event. "We have had a great turnout."


Mount Airy closed its Main Street all weekend and shuttled visitors to that town's festival from parking lots along Route 27.

Jennifer Spanberger, of the Great American Country Furniture Store, said she nearly sold out of Cat's Meow replicas of town buildings. From her stand at the entrance to the festival, she greeted hundreds of visitors.

"We have had lots of buyers," said "Must be a sign the economy is getting better."

Bridget Hamilton jostled her baby gently on her shoulder and watched her other children carefully.

"Don't touch anything on that table," she said, as she tried to find the price of a glass lamp.

All day, children surrounded the pens at the petting zoo.

"Hi, bunny," said Michael Finch, 4. "Hello, big duck. Daddy, look at the turkeys."

Walter Powell, 11, really wanted to buy one of the 10-week-old pigs that were on sale for $35, but he said he knew his mother would object.

"Children just love the animals," said Linda Bruchey, whose customers at Southern States had provided the animals for the festival.

By late Saturday afternoon, more than 250 people had donated a dollar and signed the Mount Airy birthday card, which will become a permanent record in Town Hall. Betty Ifert, who helped organize the town fund-raiser, said she would add another page for Sunday's well-wishers.

"I always wanted to be in somebody's Hall of Fame," said Carole Spiros. "Might as well be in my own town's."

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