Fire companies set to roll in carnivals

Gamber starts earlier, adds 2 days to lineup


Memorial Day weekend in Carroll will have some added attractions when the Gamber & Community Fire Company holds its annual carnival Saturday.

The Gamber carnival, which normally begins Memorial Day Monday, along with Union Bridge Fire Company's annual event, will offer two extra days of rides, games, music, food and fun.

"The past few years, we've lost at least one night each week from rain and that always hurt us," said Clay Myers, Gamber's public information officer. "We had an opportunity with our ride company - they had an empty week - and they said it would help them and they could use the business, so the Carnival Committee met and voted to try it. We're calling it the `Eight Crazy Nights of Carnival.'"

The carnivals are the largest fundraising event of the year for the 11 fire companies that have them. Gamber will use this year's proceeds to complete renovations to the building and parking lot, and for continuing operations.

Holding the carnival on a Sunday also is new, as all the firemen's carnivals have always run from Monday to Saturday. While no gambling - bingo, money wheel, gun jar or big six wheel - is allowed, the rides, food, music and other standard carnival games will be open, as well as various raffle ticket sales.

The fire company also is hoping that families will come out over the extra weekend, especially Sunday since schools will be closed Memorial Day. The holiday will be celebrated May 29 with fireworks (in event of rain, fireworks will be held May 30).

"The hardest part is getting extra help those two extra nights," Myers said. "We've got extra food, we've ordered everything we need, now we just have to worry about the weather."

The carnival will open at 6 p.m. daily from Saturday through June 3 on the carnival grounds behind the firehouse on Route 32 at Niner Road. Discounted ride nights will be May 30 and June 1.

Scheduled concerts are as follows: Saturday, Iron Ridge, bluegrass; May 28, Bobby Plunkert &Real Country; May 29, Ten Cent Band, classic rock-country; May 30, Salem Bottom Boys, bluegrass; May 31, Big Cam and the Lifters, oldies; June 1, Just Plain Country; June 2, C. B. Pickers, bluegrass; June 3, Poison Whiskey, classic rock.

Information: 410-795-3445.

Union Bridge

Union Bridge's carnival will be held May 29 through June 3 at the carnival grounds next to the firehouse at 8 W. Locust St.

As in the past, the carnival will open with a Memorial Day observance by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8806, this year at 6 p.m. at Mountain View Cemetery.

Union Bridge also offers lunches from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, as well as dinner platters from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily during carnival week.

Food stands open at 6 p.m. daily, and rides and games at 7 p.m. Ride night specials will be held Tuesday and Thursday. The firemen's parade will start at 7 p.m. May 31.

The entertainment lineup includes Country Fever on May 29, Tall in the Saddle on May 30, a firemen's parade at 7 p.m. May 31, Bob Plunkert & Real Country on June 1, No Alibi on June 2 and No Xit Band (rock) on June 3.

Information: 410-775-7422.

Festival schedule

The remaining carnival schedule is: New Windsor, June 5-10; Taneytown, June 12-17; Sykesville, June 19-24; Manchester, July 3-8; Winfield, July 10-15; Reese, July 17-22; Mount Airy, July 24-29; Harney, July 31-Aug. 5; Hampstead, Aug. 14-19.

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