At Rouzerfest, community rallies 'round the park

August 19, 2007|By ASHLEY HARTMAN

ROUZERVILLE, PA. - Whether it was the car show, craft vendors, pony rides or live music, the third annual Rouzerfest held Saturday at Red Run Park had something for everyone.

Rouzerfest was sponsored by the Rouzerville Business Association, which formed in 2004 to unite local businesses and embrace the development of larger businesses in the area such as Wal-Mart and Lowe's, said Ann Backer, a member of the business association and one of the original founders of Rouzerfest.

"Our whole goal here is we want to support the park and give money for improvements," Backer said.

Improvements at the park include a larger restroom facility and a new band pavilion.

The first Rouzerfest, held in 2005, was an idea that Backer got from a meeting she attended in Chambersburg, Pa.

Prior to 2005, the Country WAYZ Summer Fun Fest was at Red Run Park, and featured performers such as Trisha Yearwood. However, the park became too small for the event.


"People were used to coming to the park in August, so we thought, let's do something like that again," Backer said. "Each year has been better."

Rouzerfest began with a mile-and-a-half parade from Midvale Road to Red Run Park that showcased firetrucks from five surrounding fire departments.

"It was a wonderful parade," said Beverly "Maggie" Braunstein, who danced in the parade as part of the Lindy Hop.

Although the event was free, the Rouzerville Business Association raised money through a raffle, soda sales and donations to Miss Rouzerville contestants.

The Miss Rouzerville contestants were "guys from the Cascade American Legion dressed up in comical women's clothing," Backer said.

Raffle items included savings bonds, gift certificates and bingo sets. Businesses such as Lowe's, H&R Block, Brothers Pizza and Susquehanna Bank donated the items.

Twenty-eight craft vendors, six businesses and 12 food vendors were set up, said Bob Backer, another founder of Rouzerfest.

"We have a lot of repeat vendors and a lot of new vendors," said Vicki Sanders, chairperson of Rouzerfest. "We put this on for the community to come out and enjoy."

Activities geared toward children included pony rides, face painting, a train ride and a magician. There also were musical performances throughout the day, a karaoke contest and a car show.

Forty-nine cars signed up for the car show, which was sponsored by Sounds So Good Car Audio of Waynesboro, Pa.

"So far, I think we've done well," said Ryan Bryan of Sounds So Good Car Audio. "Rouzerfest is for a good cause, (and) every year it seems to draw a fair amount of people."

Debbie Morrow of Waynesboro entered her 1970 Chevelle in the car show.

"We just came out to enjoy the day," Morrow said. She did not expect her car to win a trophy because it was not restored.

Although Rouzerfest did not achieve fundraising goals in the past two years, Sanders was optimistic about this year.

"We should be able to do a good donation this year" to Red Run Park," Sanders said.

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