WITHOUT EVEN looking at the calendar, you can tell that fall has arrived. It's not just the chilly mornings that warm into mild breezy afternoons or the sudden appearance of roadside stands full of pumpkins and mums or even the dry, brown fields of corn.
All accurately signal the arrival of fall, just as weekends with festivals and outdoor activities do.
This weekend, Mount Airy and Winfield are as far as you have to go for activities for the family.
Mount Airy celebrates
Main Street in downtown Mount Airy will be closed to traffic, as the town celebrates its 12th annual Fall Festival Days this weekend.
The event begins with Mount Airy's fun run at 9 a.m. tomorrow. This year, the run is jointly sponsored by the PTA groups from Mount Airy and Twin Ridge elementaries. The run begins at the municipal parking lot, between Center Street and Park Avenue, and follows a one-mile route through a residential area. The route will be marked, and traffic will be controlled by state police
Participants are invited to get into a festival mood by running, walking or strolling through Mount Airy. Registration fees of $2 per person or $5 per family will be charged. Registrations will be taken at the municipal parking lot starting at 8: 15 a.m. Warm-up exercises begin at 8: 40 a.m., and the run starts at 9 a.m.
While your legs are still limber, stroll into downtown Mount Airy for a weekend of fall activities.
Until 5 p.m. tomorrow and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, more than 140 craftspeople and artisans will display their wares. Demonstrations, live music, hayrides and scarecrow- making, as well as pumpkin-painting and children's magic and puppet shows, offer family entertainment. Food booths will be plentiful.
Last year's festival attendance was estimated at between 10,000 and 15,000.
An event of this size, encompassing local talent and numerous community resources, is no small undertaking. The Fall Festival Committee begins meeting each November, and by January the plans are in full swing for the next festival.
Hundreds of details, such as advertising, rentals, traffic control, T-shirts and shuttle buses are left in the very experienced and capable hands of committee Chairman Ben Gue.
Gue, who chaired the committee in previous years, is assisted this year by Ricky Lawson, Audrey Stapf, Anne Dorsey, Jill Shumaker, Connie German, Marlene Bohn, Tina Grogg, Ronnie Bohn Jr., and Mary Spamberger.
Committee members say that parking and getting to and from downtown won't be a problem.
Free shuttle buses will run throughout the festival weekend. Buses will leave every half-hour from the Mount Airy Firemen's Carnival Grounds at Route 27 and Twin Arch Road. Parking is free at the carnival grounds. The buses are sponsored by Mount Airy Lions Club and Mount Airy Chamber of Commerce.
Stop by the children's park behind F&M Bank at 10 a.m. tomorrow to view Mount Airy's pets dressed in their finest and funniest costumes, competing for top honors in the Pet Contest.
At the park, children can enjoy pony rides, a petting zoo, games, face-painting, Punch-and-Judy shows and other events.
The old Mount Airy Train Station is the location for the Pretty Baby Contest. Festival-goers are encouraged to use pennies to vote for the most adorable and photogenic baby.
Somewhere between scarecrow-stuffing and licking funnel cake sugar off your fingers, have your blood pressure and cholesterol checked at the Wellness Center, sponsored by Frederick Memorial Hospital. It will be located at Van Sant Plumbing & Heating.
Take a break from the activities on Main Street and walk around the corner to view the Whistle Stop Railroad Train Garden on Prospect Street. Jack and Lois Raines are opening their extensive outdoor model train display to the public from 10: 30 a.m. tomorrow and from 12: 30 p.m. Sunday.
Live music includes South Carroll High School Cavalier Band at 10: 30 a.m. tomorrow. Also tomorrow, the Heartstrings Band will perform at 1 p.m., 2: 30 p.m. and 3: 45 p.m. The Sneaky Feelings Band will provide the musical entertainment at noon Sunday.
Tomorrow is the first Craft Show and Flea Market sponsored by Winfield Elementary School's PTA.
The market is from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., rain or shine. Information: (410) 875-0594 or (410) 876-2102.
Christy Kruhm's Southwest Carroll Neighborhood column appears each Friday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.
Pub Date: 10/04/96