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Musicians gather for Everybody's Day

August 27, 2000

Musicians gather for Everybody's Day



By ANDREA BROWN-HURLEY / Staff Writer


CASCADE - Lee and Iggy Smerdzinski waltzed into each other's lives several years ago.

And the avid dancers traveled from their Baltimore home to Pen Mar Park in Cascade on Sunday to boogie under the big pavilion during the annual Everybody's Day celebration.

"We expect to dance- if we can get on the floor," said Lee Smerdzinksi, 77, eyeing the throngs of dance enthusiasts surrounding the L-shaped dance pavilion.

The free outdoor event is the highlight of the early spring to fall Sunday Big Band concert series, said Jim Powers, secretary/treasurer of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) Local 770.

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The local AFM chapter sponsors Everybody's Day with the Washington County Recreation & Parks Department and the Washington County Arts Council.

About 6,000 people flocked to last year's celebration, but Powers said the threat of rain Sunday could have kept some people from the mountaintop park in Washington County's northeast corner.

Cloudy skies didn't deter Frederick, Md., native Jim Engle.

"I've got my umbrella and my old shoes on in case it rains," said Engle, 65, who waited for the 21-piece Bob Clay Orchestra to begin playing.

"You don't need to dance," said Engle, who learned to jitterbug at Pen Mar. "If you can't tap your foot to this kind of music, there's something wrong with you."

Though the music was the big draw for many attendees, Everybody's Day offers something for everyone, Powers said.

Picnic tables were filled with friends and families such as the Lowes of Waynesboro, Pa., who gather at the Pen Mar event each year, said Ron Lowe.

"It's nice and peaceful up here, he said. "It's a good atmosphere."

Hazy skies dampened the park's panoramic view of Washington County, but an abundance of activities kept spirits bright.

The Potamac Indian Dancers entertained the crowd, the Cumberland Valley Woodcarvers displayed their wares, and classic car collectors showcased their shiny vehicles.

The Miniature Carousel Builders, Inc., which formed in Chambersburg, Pa., in 1986, also exhibited club members' handmade mini-merry-go-rounds.

Chic Hutton, 72, of Waynesboro, Pa., said he "had to pick a lot of people's brains" to craft his replica of the carousel which spun in Pen Mar Park from 1907 to 1942. Hutton spent more than 1,000 hours building the detailed replica, but is still searching for information about the organ that played on the carousel, he said.

Giggles the clown said she was having "tons and tons" of fun passing out balloons to children, many of whom crowded into a pavilion to watch the Beale Street Puppets' "Razzle Dazzle Revue."

Jessica Rowland, 9, and Margaret Shetter, 10, both of Waynesboro, enjoyed seeing a stringed elephant dance, wiggle its ears and perform tricks with a tennis ball.

"It's really funny," Margaret said.

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