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Crowds flock to June Jubilee

June 10, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Organizers of the June Jubilee were scrambling to keep up with an unexpectedly large crowd Sunday as an estimated 5,000 to 6,000 people streamed into War Memorial Park for the annual celebration.

Festivalgoers immediately flocked to food booths when the gates opened at 11 a.m., catching cooks off guard, said Ted Morgan, chairman of the event.

In past years, the usual rush for food occurred around noon, said Morgan, adding that food service people were having trouble keeping up with the crowd Sunday.

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"This is probably the biggest crowd we've had, if not a tie," said Morgan as he zipped from event to event Sunday to ensure everything went smoothly.

About 4,000 people attended last year.

In the early afternoon, there was still a long line at Flaming Frank's Bar-B-Que Sandwiches.

"I'm new to the area and I didn't know this many people lived in Martinsburg," said Kevin Gallimore as he and Barb Miller left Flaming Franks with food.

Morgan said he believes June Jubilee continues to grow because it is a well-established event.

The event marked its 15th anniversary Sunday.

The event was started as a way to bring people into the park and raise awareness about the needs of the facility, located off Tennessee Avenue.

June Jubilee raises several thousand dollars a year for the park through entry fees for a car show, food sales and craftspeople who rent space at the festival, Morgan said.

The band Red and Murphy and Co. pumped out a steady stream of bluegrass music from a stage while kids enjoyed attractions like a magic show and Moon Bounce, an inflatable enclosure in which kids could jump.

Another growing attraction at June Jubilee is the car show, which attracted 150 entrants, up by 25 over last year, said Morgan.

Morgan said he believes car enthusiasts like showing their automobiles at the show because of the way they are treated at the event. Winners vie for trophies, engraved plaques, T-shirts, a dash plaque and miniature pedal cars.

Morgan said he believes the park is an attractive place to show cars because owners can enjoy the other events while there.

"I think it's a real good show and a good place to have it in," said Jason Layman, a Front Royal, Va., resident who was showing his 1957 Ford Thunderbird.

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