New attractions popular
BOONSBORO, Md. (May 10, 2014) – Other than a couple of afternoon showers, sponsored by Mother Nature herself, the 6th Annual Boonsboro Green Fest in Shafer Memorial Park went off just as planned today without even a hiccup.
Nearly 3,500 festival-goers were treated to live music performances by three accomplished local acts; a variety of foods and refreshments, including the new Wine & Beer Garden with local breweries and wineries; children’s activities all day, featuring rock climbing; special guest speakers on current hot topics; a new venue for professional health and fitness providers, who offered tests and screenings; and 184 vendors, a record number.
Better than 80 sponsoring partners supported the festival with monetary, as well as in-kind, contributions. The Boonsboro Green Fest Committee served as the general sponsor.
The festival was an official event of the Town of Boonsboro, as it has been since its inception in 2009. Janeen Solberg and Barbara Wetzel served as general co-chairs for the fourth year.
Compliments like these abounded:
- “This is the best one. Every year it just gets better and better”.
- “The Green Fest Committee needs to be congratulated for doing an outstanding job again this year.”
- “As a first-time vendor here, I have never seen a better organized affair. It is the best run festival I have attended.”
- “All of the green banners coming into town are a sight to behold!”
- “This is the cleanest event I’ve ever seen. There is no litter anywhere. What a great crowd.”
The festival opened at 10 o’clock with Boonsboro songstress Patti McTigue leading everyone in the singing of “This Land Is Your Land.”
The sun shone brightly as the vendors opened up shop to throngs of festival-goers looking for original art, crafty gifts, information on solar and rain gardens, jewelry made from sea glass and old silverware, tomato plants for their gardens, tote bags made from woven plastic bags, fresh vegetables, breakfast prepared by a local service organization, hummingbird feeders, or a “new” wardrobe at the clothing swap.
The Recycling Zone played host to hundreds of area residents dropping off articles at the 25 different collection stations. At times, the line of waiting vehicles stretched all the way out to Main Street. Zone coordinators Greg Solberg, Darrell and Amy Jones were assisted by Jack Nerlinger and Rick Schulman, parking supervisor, as well as many volunteers who signed up to help during the day.
More than 8,000 items were swapped and sold in Pavilion #1, the site of the Gently Used Clothing and Sports Equipment Swap and Sale. Proceeds from the sale were donated to Micah’s Backpack program, which provides school children in South County with food items to take home over the weekend. The leftover clothing was donated to Children in Need of Washington County. Committee member Brigitte Schmidt coordinated the effort during all six Green Fests.
Committee member Kathy Vesely coordinated more than 100 volunteers throughout the day, as they assisted with setting up, passing out brochures, monitoring waste stations, and breaking down at the end of the event.
Festival goers shop for plants.
All areas of the park were bustling with activity when the first live music act, the Prophets of the Abstract Truth, of Hagerstown, began their set at 10:30 p.m. The Prophets were the first to perform. They were followed by Tony M. Music, of Martinsburg, W. Va., and Andy Carignan, of Mt. Airy. The smaller stage set-up was a little more intimate than in past years, because no more than three persons performed at any one time.
Not far from the stage was the new Wine & Beer Garden, featuring wines, beers and distilled ciders from local producers. The canopy provided much sought-after cover from the rain showers for festival-goers. They were able to take a little break and try out some of the locally-produced beverages, while listening to the music from the nearby stage. The tent was coordinated by John Holmes of Antietam Spirits, who was also a major tent sponsor along with Big Cork Vineyards of Rohrersville.
The food concessions, coordinated by committee member Laura Schnackenburg, featured a variety of choices from Greek and German foods to pulled pork sandwiches, vegetarian selections to hamburgers and hotdogs to soft ice cream and brownies to hand-dipped cones. A water bottle filling station was also offered near the food pavilion.
More than 80 doors prizes were handed out to lucky winners in drawings between musical acts. Most of the prizes were donated by vendors and local businesses.
Another new feature was the Health & Fitness tent, which was filled with medical and physical fitness professionals who offered information, as well as testing and screening, including those for blood pressure, blood sugar, breast cancer, skin hydration, eye health, and substance abuse. The tent was coordinated by Mary Ellis, a supervisor with Diagnostic Imaging Services. DIS, of Hagerstown, was a major sponsor of the tent along with South Mountain Family Practice of Boonsboro.
Program topics in the speakers’ tent included fracking, super foods used to fight allergies, composting, green jobs and bees. One planned speaker on GMOs was unable to attend due to a transportation problem, but a couple of Boonsboro High School advanced placement students in the audience led a lively discussion on the topic, which was one of the highlights of the day, according to speaker coordinator Rosemary James. Major sponsors of the speakers were Antietam Cable, Eby’s Garage and Sycamore Run.
Young rock climber reaching
for the top.
The Kids Zone was busy all day with crafts, projects and puppet shows. One of the highlights each year is the creation of a huge bottle cap mosaic. This year’s was outlined by art students at the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts. It will be on display at difference venues throughout the community. Sean and Leslie Haardt coordinated the children’s activities.
Other major sponsors of the event were Michele R. Shaffer, CPA of Boonsboro, who sponsored the printed program; Turn The Page Bookstore, free shredding service and bookmark printing; Reese’s Home Improvements, Inc.; DM Designs, design services; Bellwether Printing, printing services; Cochran Auctioneers & Associates, poster printing; Millennium 3 Energy, and Natural Fusion Hair Studio.
Prior to the event, Committee members Frances Lynch and Jennifer Guenther coordinated the distribution of posters and bookmarks, while graphic artist and designer Dan Murphy designed printed materials, t-shirts, refillable water bottles, signs, and banners.
In addition, Janeen Solberg coordinated the vendor sign-up and placement, while Barbara Wetzel was in charge sponsors, the website, and publicity, and Jill Reddecliff served as the announcer and coordinated advertising.
Tony Drury, the Washington County recycling coordinator, served as liaison on the committee again this year.
Scott McIlwee of Bee Landscaping
displays a working water feature.
Lamp-post banners, which are displayed along Main Street and in the park, were purchased this year by the Town of Keedysville, BodySense PT, Enkore Kids, Fit in Boonsboro, Fahrney-Keedy Home and Village, High Tech Powder Coating, Dan’s Restaurant & Tap House (2), Inn BoonsBoro, and Bee Landscaping.
Next year might be the last opportunity for awhile for businesses, organizations and individuals to purchase banners, as all the lamp-posts will be decorated with the addition of only nine more banners. The banners are used each year, so long as they might last.
Go to www.boonsborogreenfest.com for more information.