Balloon launch, Fun Run mark start of Fall Festival

NEIGHBORS

September 30, 1994|By KATHY SUTPHIN

When sunlight pours over Mount Airy's carnival grounds tomorrow morning, a vibrant octet of hot air balloons will ascend, one by one, into the October sky to herald the beginning of the town's Fall Festival.

Weather permitting, the Centennial Balloon Launch, which was postponed from Aug. 21, will feature eight entries in the race and rally that begins at 7:30 a.m. Saturday at Route 27 and Twin Arch Road.

A more grounded kickoff for the annual two-day Fall Festival will follow at 9 a.m. when students from Mount Airy and Twin Ridge elementary schools and their families gather at the municipal parking lot near Park Avenue to enjoy a one-mile Fun Run.

Everyone is welcome to participate in the rain-or-shine event; walk, stroll, jog or run to complete the course. Registration for the PTA fund-raiser begins at 8 a.m. at the town parking lot. The cost is $2 per person or $5 per family.

A wide slate of activities has been planned for the community celebration, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday in the heart of Mount Airy's historic Main Street business district.

A free shuttle service, provided both days by Carroll Transit System and sponsored by the Greater Mount Airy Business Association Inc., will run buses between the festival and the carnival grounds every half-hour.

More than 140 crafts people will display a variety of wares to festival patrons on both days. From hearty pit beef sandwiches to crispy funnel cakes, an array of foods will be available. Demonstrations of candle making, caning, spinning and apple butter making will also be featured. An old-fashioned photo studio will also be open for business behind the train station.

Lively entertainment will be provided along Main Street on both days of the festival, spotlighting the talents of the Caballero Brothers and Sneaking Feelings Band as well as performances by students of TaDa and Mount Airy Dance Studios.

Visitors also will enjoy demonstrations of line dancing by members of the Mount Airy Senior Center and gymnastics, karate and cake decorating presented by the Mount Airy Recreation Council.

Local farmer and president of the Maryland Farm Bureau Bill Knill will again provide hay rides along the circumference of the festival. Riders will be loaded and unloaded in the area behind the Gun Shack/Cross Winds at from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

A haven for young festival patrons has been planned for the area beside and behind F&M National Bank, featuring pumpkin painting, make-a-scarecrow, face painting, pony rides, moon bounce, human gyroscope, chapel theater and an 100-foot obstacle course.

Nearby Prospect Park will be the setting for a Civil War Union encampment by the Third Regiment Infantry, Maryland Volunteers.

The two-day encampment will re-create a Union camp as it may have been more than 130 years ago, with company drills, musket practice, mail call, cooking and a military hospital. A blanket display and history talks will also be featured.

Festival competitions include the Best Dressed Pet Contest, sponsored by Southern States at 10 a.m. Saturday, followed by the Chili Contest sponsored by Christi's Restaurant at 2 p.m.

Sunday, the Longest Beard Contest sponsored by the Mount Airy Senior Center will take place at 1 p.m.

A Pie-Eating Contest for five age groups will be sponsored by Foodrite Groceteria at 3 p.m.

Other activities will include a petting zoo, blood pressure and cholesterol screenings, bake sales, a membership drive by Boy Scout Troop 1191, and an assortment of raffles.

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Platters piled high with turkey, oysters and ham will greet patrons of the first of two Mount Airy Fire Company fall dinners at TTC the Firemen's Activity Building at Twin Arch Road and Route 27.

The family-style fund-raising feast begins at noon Sunday and will cost $9 for adults and $4.50 for children 12 and under. Carry-outs will be 50 cents extra and youngsters under 5 years eat for free.

Don't miss home-baked goodies at the bake table. The next dinner is set for Nov. 6.

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Fried chicken, roast beef and ham will be the featured fare Sunday when the Winfield Community Volunteer Fire Department has its annual fall dinner at the firehouse, 1320 W. Old Liberty Road, Winfield.

The all-you-can-eat fund-raiser begins at noon and will cost $8.50 for adults, $3.50 for children 6 to 12 years old. The dinner will be served family-style and will be free for children 5 and under. A bake table will also be featured.

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Congratulatory letters and checks are being mailed to all winners who participated in the Mount Airy Centennial Parade.

For many entrants, the letters will be the first notification that they have won, according to parade committee member Travis Norwood. "We want to thank everyone who participated," he said.

Cash prizes in the local parade-of-the-century total $3,275. Winners were selected by independent judges from Pennsylvania during the 80-unit trek down Main Street on Sept. 24.

The winners:

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