With all the hot weather lately, we've had a sneak preview of summer. And what better way to welcome summer's imminent arrival than by attending the 11th Savage Fest on June 3 and 4 at Baldwin Commons in Savage? The block party-meets-fair is the unofficial opening of the summer season.
With the festival three weeks away, Myra Phelpsand Corrine Arnold, two of the organizers, are busy. Most of the work is done, but there are lots of details to be made final.
A parade will be held the morning of June 3. Vendor booths and the best place for the 40-foot-tall kids' slide have to be laid out. Taller than most buildings in Savage, the slide is 100 feet long.
Sharon Spicheris laying out locations this week. She has to find shade for the pony rides, so the animals don't become overheated, a larger space where blacksmith Bucky VanAlstinecan demonstrate his art, a longer spot for sack races and the horseshoe toss, and a logical layout for crafts booths.
Larry Whiteof North Laurel Auto, Bobby and Maryanne Mitchellof Ma's Kettle, Corky Fertittaof the Ram's Head Tavern and Greg Freeze of Fuel Management Systems have pitched in to sponsor entertainment.
Nealand Linda Doranof the Savage Country and Bluegrass Band, which most often plays at Ma's Kettle, will perform, as will On the Rise.
Chuck Dick, who this winter put on a performance of "A Christmas Carol" in Carroll Baldwin Hall, returns with acting friends to sing Broadway classics. He is also getting jugglers and magicians to roam the fair, astonishing everyone with feats of prestidigitation.
The nationally ranked Patuxent Valley Middle School step team and the Bollman Bridge Kangaroo Kids jump rope team will perform between the musical acts. Expect great food, snow cones, lots of raffles, (including a chance to drive a NASCAR Winston Cup car at a racing school in Delaware) and the company of great people.
This event draws such a pleasant crowd that other groups piggyback their fund-raising and outreach efforts onto the festival. As usual, the Savage United Methodist Church, 9050 Baltimore St., will hold its Strawberry Festival on June 3. Church members make ice cream to serve with the strawberries, as well as great cakes.
Bethel Christian School and Bethel Assembly of God will hold a health screening and a blood drive June 3.
The Savage Fest will be held from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. June 3 and noon to 5:30 p.m. June 4 at Baltimore and Foundry streets. Admission is free. Crafters' spaces are available.
Leighton Bourginis a frequent volunteer gardener in our area. She has worked to make the flower beds by the Savage library and Bollman Bridge Elementary School attractive, planting hardy shrubs and perennials.
Her latest project involves selling, not planting. She wants to buy more fencing for a butterfly garden at the school.
Years ago, a resource teacher assigned pupils to research and carry out a plan to attract butterflies to the school's grassy court. The children were successful - flowers bloomed and the butterflies came. But several years later, the flower beds needed tending.
Then Leighton stepped in.
It's no longer exclusively a butterfly garden; some plants had died, and Leighton planted hardy favorites in their space. She thought the garden would look better with a small fence, so last fall she sold her plants to finance the purchase.
She's selling plants this spring, culling them from divisions in her garden and those of friends. As she says, the plants do very well in this area - why else would gardeners provide extras? From her yard, she plans to sell Hostas and day lillies.
Stop by May 20 to pick up easy-growing perennials and help improve the school's garden.
Kudos to walkers
Congratulations to the young members of Emanuel United Methodist Church who participated in the 15K Multiple Sclerosis fund-raiser walk.
Their aching feet raised $1,850.
The walkers were Jenny Baker, Forrest IronsJim Irons, Mikey Liddle, Mary Lewis, Carol Lewis, Andy Parker, Denise Parker, Julie Patterson, Matt Patterson, Phillip Simplerand Erin Simpler.