Festival marks town's burning, rebirth

July 15, 2004|by KATE COLEMAN

For the 18th year, Chambersburg, Pa., will commemorate its 1864 burning by Confederate troops. The 140th anniversary will be marked, and ChambersFest 2004 will celebrate the rebirth, vitality and future of the city with more than two weeks of activities.

The grand opening of the Chambersburg Heritage Center will honor the memory of the late Ray Depuy, a longtime resident who worked on the Heritage Center project. The center is the new home of the Chamber of Commerce, Chambersburg Area Development Corp. and Downtown Chambersburg Inc., as well as offices of U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Pa.

New to the festival is a one-mile race that honors the memory of Tim and Susan Cook, who died in an automobile accident in December 2002. Tim Cook taught and coached running at Chambersburg Area Senior High School for nearly 30 years. The event supports scholarships.


There's a Civil War seminar, and the arts - a wide variety of them - will be celebrated downtown at Old Market Day all day Saturday, July 17. There will be square-dancing and ballet and a variety of music on three stages - jazz, funk, pop, folk, Cajun, Celtic, bluegrass and Hispanic. Two hundred vendors will sell their wares, including lots of jewelry and glass. Food offerings will range from handmade fudge and kettle corn to crab cakes and egg rolls.

Festivities include:

Friday, July 16

  • 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. - Tours of the Old Jail, 175 E. King St. Kittochtinny Historical Society and Museum.

  • Noon - Ray Depuy Memorial Gala Opening. Official opening of the Chambersburg Heritage Center, Memorial Square at Lincoln Way East; Civil War music by Kent and Erica Courtney at Courthouse Plaza.

  • 6 p.m. - Tim and Susan Cook Memorial One-Mile Race begins at Chambersburg Area Middle School, 1151 E. McKinley St., and ends at Chambersburg Area Senior High School, 511 S. Sixth St. 6 p.m. registration; 7 p.m. fun run/walk; 7:30 p.m. high school race; 7:45 p.m. open race; 8 p.m. masters race (40 and older). For more information on the race, call 1-717-264-7101.

Saturday, July 17

  • 7 to 11 a.m. - James Humelsine Memorial Volksmarch: five-kilometer and 10-kilometer walks start at Chambersburg Area Middle School and go through downtown Chambersburg. For more information about the walks, call 1-717-263-8633.

  • 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. - Information booth, Memorial Square.

  • 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. - Old Market Day: more than 200 craft and food vendors in downtown Chambersburg. Civil War encampment, music, arts, children's activities, demonstrations.

  • 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. - Chambersburg Heritage Center Tours. Also, author Ted Alexander will sign his book from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

  • 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. - Tours of the Old Jail, 175 E. King St. Kittochtinny Historical Society and Museum.

  • 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. CV Model Railroad Club open house, 440 Nelson St. 1-717-264-3081.

  • 3 to 5 p.m. - African-American gospel music workshops, Central Presbyterian Church, 40 Lincoln Way West.

  • 7:30 p.m. - A Celebration of African-American Gospel Music concert. Free. Capitol Theatre, 159 S. Main St. Call 1-717-261-1220 or visit the Cumberland Valley School of Music Web site at

Monday, July 19

  • 5:30 p.m. registration - Pet Parade, United Towers, 200 N. Main St. Dogs, cats, pigs, birds, exotic animals. Categories include best of show, biggest, smallest, most unusual, and costumed look-alike for owner and pet. Rain date is Wednesday, July 21.

Tuesday, July 20

  • 6 p.m. - "Almost Anything Goes" games, Henninger Field, Commerce Avenue at Vine. Area businesses compete in games. $2. Rain date is Thursday, July 22.

Wednesday, July 21

  • "The Shenandoah Campaign of 1864," a Civil War seminar at The Plaza Hotel in Hagerstown, continues through Sunday, July 25. For more on the seminar, call 1-717-264-7101. Registration is required.

Thursday, July 22

  • 8:30 p.m. - Heritage Center reception with Ed Bearss, Chambersburg Heritage Center. For more about the reception, call 1-717-264-7101.

Saturday, July 24

  • 7:30 p.m. - Cumberland Valley School of Music Concert Jazz Band. David Wenerd directs the 18-member big band comprised of local professional and amateur musicians performing contemporary jazz. Thomson Chapel, Wilson College, 1015 Philadelphia Ave. Free. For more information about the band, call 1-717-261-1220 or go to on the Web.

Sunday, July 25

  • 3 to 6 p.m. - Fourth annual Summer Jam: fun for kids. Mike Waters Memorial Park, formerly South Second Street Playground.

Thursday, July 29

  • 7 p.m. - Voxology concert, with original acoustic folk music. Memorial Park Band Shell. Free.

Friday, July 30

  • "McCausland's Raid on Chambersburg: 140th Anniversary of the Burning of Chambersburg," a Civil War seminar at Four Points Sheraton in Chambersburg, will be held Friday and Saturday, July 31. For more on the seminar, call 1-717-264-7101. Registration is required.

  • 7 p.m. - The 140th anniversary commemoration of the burning of Chambersburg will feature entertainment, dessert reception, discussion and book signings. Chambersburg Heritage Center.

Saturday, July 31

  • Two videos that chronicle the history of Chambersburg and the area's transportation will premiere at Chambersburg Heritage Center.
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