Rain stopped just in time for 10th annual Green Fest
…and everybody came out
BOONSBORO, Md. (May 20, 2018) – The grass wasn’t the only thing that was green on Saturday at Shafer Park. Hundreds of people got to see all kinds of Eco-friendly products, crafts and information about programs and services during the 10th annual Boonsboro Green Fest.
The rain begrudgingly came to a halt in mid-morning just in time for the opening ceremony and the official start of the rain-or-shine, spring festival, which began its decade-long run in 2009.
Attendees with high-top boots fared better than others who opted for less skimpier footwear. The kids were in hog-heaven slogging and splashing through muddy puddles. Adults not so happy!
Two hundred signed up to be vendors. Not all made it to the park, primarily because of threatening weather. But the dozens and dozens who did show up were rewarded with better weather than the area had seen in a week of rainy days.
A major part of Green Fest each year has been the recycling operation set up in the Community Center parking lot. This year was no exception. The trucks and trailers on hand for the collection of TV’s, household goods and scrap metal were filled to capacity before the area closed at 3 p.m. Volunteers helped residents unload their vehicles of a variety of recyclables destined for more than two dozen charities, organizations and companies.
The Gently-Used Clothing & Sports Equipment Swap & Sale did a “land office” business as thousands of items were swapped, donated or purchased. More than $300 was collected for the Micah’s Backpack program that benefits South County students.
The musical acts kept everything lively all day long. Heard over the park’s PA system were singer Paul Pfau, originally of Middletown and now of Nashville, and two bands, Johnny & the Headhunters from the D.C. area and The lonesome Fiddle Ramblers of Hagerstown. Performing all day in the Kids Zone, for children and adults alike, was singer-songwriter Tony M. Music, of Martinsburg, who has played at almost every festival.
The Wine & Beer Garden and the food vendors remained busy, while nearby three Silent Auctions were conducted, featuring a variety of items, many of which were donated by the vendors. Profits from the auction are used for festival expenses, while the funds raised in the Garden got directly to Shafer Park, the home of the festival.
Activities in and around the Kids Zone pavilion were held all day, as middle and high school student volunteers helped the younger children with crafts, seed planting, Geo–caching and building the huge bottle-cap mosaic of The Scream, a painting by Edvard Munch.
Youngster from ages 3 to10 were introduced to a new waterfowl character in a story and game developed by the Washington County’s stormwater agency. After hearing the story of “Marew, the Little Yellow Duck” and receiving a rubber duck, the youngsters got to race their ducks in the stream, the water of which eventually flows into the Chesapeake Bay. Plans are to develop a printed book for future presentations.
The Green Fest was dedicated to the late Bob Wetzel, one of the festival’s biggest supporters over the years. A tree to be planted in his honor was presented to the Park Board and Tree Board. A retired Boonsboro High School teacher, former member of the Town Council and a local businessman, he was married to Barbara Wetzel, one of the festival founders.
Besides co-chairs Barbara Wetzel and Janeen Solberg, the other four founders are Rosemary James, Amy Jones, Laura Schnackenberg and Kathy Vesely. Rounding out the 2018 committee were Cathy Beeler, Renee Elias, Leslie and Sean Haardt, Darrell Jones, Dan Murphy, Kim Payne, Susan Simonson, Greg Solberg, Deanna Teal, Julie Weissenberger and county liaison Tony Drury.
Founders, who have been on the committee in the past and contributed significantly to the festival’s success were Harvey Hoch, Jenny Sarnecki, Brigitte Schmidt and Rick Schulman.
The committee members wore special bright, tie-dyed Green Fest T-shirts with the a stylized design of the 10th anniversary seal. Green T-shirts, with the seal, were available for sale to festival-goers.
The opening ribbon-cutting ceremony was emceed by local radio and TV broadcaster Lou Scally, who introduced elected officials, school administrators, representatives from local and state agencies, and sponsoring partners.
The festival is an official event of the Town of Boonsboro.