Hampstead Day gives town a chance to shine


HAMPSTEAD -- More than 140 vendors and 40 church and civic groups will take to the streets from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday for the 19th annual Hampstead Days.

The popular fund-raising event sponsored by the Hampstead Rotary Club attracts thousands of area residents each year, who peruse a variety of crafts, jewelry and plants and enjoy all types of tasty fare.

Tagged as one of Carroll's biggest annual events, Hampstead Days provides participants an opportunity to make money while promoting the town.

"A number of things make Hampstead Days a great event," said Steve Silberman, this year's event chairman.

"We bring in people from not only Carroll County, but also Baltimore and Pennsylvania," Silberman said. "They come in and see how nice Hampstead is -- the shops, the people and the town.

"The non-profit groups sell all the food and beverages, and the money they take in helps them make their budgets. Also, local crafts people have the opportunity to get before the public and sell their wares."

Roughly 180 spaces on both sides of Main Street are designated for participants to set up shop for the day.

No traffic -- other than "shoe leather express" -- is permitted on the mile-long section of Main Street that runs from Houcksville Road to Hampstead/Mexico Road (Route 482).

Food and beverage stands will enable browsers to take a break and grab a bite.

"We have been here since the beginning, and we have always had a very large tent on our parking lot which serves as a respite for weary Hampstead-goers," said Sedonia Martin, chairwoman of Hampstead Days for St. John's United Methodist Church in Hampstead.

"We sell hamburgers, hot dogs, fries and drinks, as well as provide a place for people to sit and rest."

Jim Dwyer, president of the Hampstead Volunteer Fire Company, said the event is a fund-raiser for a number of groups affiliated with the fire company.

"We have the breakfast, which kind of kicks things off, and then we run a pit beef stand," Dwyer said of the volunteer firefighters. "The junior firemen sell Cokes and our Ladies' Auxiliary sells fruit salad. The fire company serves as a focal point because everything is located in front of the station."

For information, call 876-9092.

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