Garrettsville – Summerfest brought the tranquil town of Garrettsville to life last weekend as record crowds jammed the downtown area for a weekend of fun. The rain didn’t keep folks from coming out to celebrate summer with style. Folks armed with umbrellas came out ready to celebrate the start of summer on Friday. Mayor Craig Moser declared the weekend festivities open for fun and the crowd was ready to party.
Rides, food, games and great music were on tap for the evenings. The youngsters were anxious to check out the rides while the adults were just ready to chill out after the work week. Mr. Speed, a KISS tribute band, brought the crowd to life as they rocked out the night. Those with a more mellow taste in music chilled out with classic rock by the Boys are Back. Rain drops cancelled the adult canoe races but shortly after the races were put on hold, the town was rewarded with a rainbow. Was this sign that the rain was over? Capping off the evening was the Parade of Canoes with lighted, decorated canoes cruising down the creek. The view from the boardwalk was awesome!
Early Saturday, folks were arriving with pies in hand, vying to be named best pie baker in the region. The tractors began rumbling through town around lunchtime drawing record-breaking crowds to the festivities. Youngsters and seasoned folks flocked to the sidewalks to see the wonderful machines. Approximately 200 tractors wowed the crowd as they rolled through town.
Wedding bells chimed at SummerFest as Jennifer Brown became Mrs. Harry L. Cales Jr. in a ceremony co-officiated by Rev. Dreama Adkins and Mayor Craig Mosier. Prior to the wedding event attendees were also privileged to watch Noreen and Bill Siegner say “I Do” a second time around as they renewed their wedding vows a few days shy of their 30th wedding anniversary. Congratulations to both couples!
Throughout the day, crowds continued to build and stayed long into the evening as they rocked the night away with Thunderstruck and Bringing Benatar. The evening closed with a dynamite pyrotechnic display, that left everyone ooing and ahhing.
Hundreds sacrificed sleep Sunday to run/walk in the first annual SummerFest 5krun/walk for the glioma, kids cancer in memory of Melana Matson. The race was on and awards given just in time for the grand parade line-up. The grand parade hit the streets with parade marshals Hallie and Irv Higgins leading the way. Canoes took to the water with a few folks who struggled to keep their boats upright, leaving a few soggy paddlers scrambling to find dry clothes.
Cloggers, took to the stage as they danced the afternoon away, inside and outside. The dancers competed in a dance contest after they performed on the streets. Ronald McDonald, Aaron Bonk and Jungle Terry kept the kids entertained with their acts while the adults were busy staking their claim for the Garrettsville Idol Contest and to hear if they won the raffle for The Chevrolet Cruze or $20,000.
The festivities came to a close, with Eric Juskiw becoming this year’s Garrettsville Idol and Jan Andrella declared the winner of a 2011 Chevy Cruze or $20,000 in cash.
This year’s SummerFest was sponsored by Charles Chevrolet-Buick, Garrettsville Chamber of Commerce, Carlson Funeral Homes and Cremation Services and the Weekly Villager. The festival is traditionally held the last weekend in June at the corners of S.R.82 and S.R. 88 in downtown Garrettsville.
Photos from the event can be found at www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com