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Halfway Park Days offers food, fun

May 25, 2008|By ALICIA NOTARIANNI

HALFWAY - It's not every day you can buy hand-painted Vietnamese tunic and pant sets at a park.

But at Halfway Park Days at Martin L. "Marty" Snook Memorial Park, patrons can find traditional festival fare and a bit of the unexpected.

Vendors sprawl the length of the walking trail and beyond, offering at turns silver jewelry, decorative outhouses, magic shows, window estimates and fried chicken.

Denise Luna, 54, of Hagerstown, stood in the Carol Fashions booth trying on Vietnamese apparel with her sister, Dawn Burkholder, 51, and her niece, Krystal Caudell, 28.

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"The quality is excellent, it's washable and (the vendor) does alterations," Luna said.

While Burkholder was smitten with the Vietnamese couture, she said she only had begun her shopping.

"I check out everything - the clothes, the crafts, ..." Burkholder said.

At the opposite end of the path near the concession area were Mike and Pat Waugh, 64 and 57, of Hagerstown. Mike Waugh had no interest in shopping.

"All I come for is the food," he said.

The couple agreed they like supporting local fundraising efforts. But while Mike Waugh rejected the option of shopping, noting that the two recently had downsized, Pat kept her options open.

"I'm always amazed at how talented people are," she said. "There could always be something to catch the eye."

Linda Gordon, 34, shopped with her daughters, Monique, 15, and Lynique, 5. Lynique had picked up a Dora the Explorer toy, while Linda Gordon snacked on a funnel cake.

"It's just nice to get out on a beautiful day for a girls' day out," Linda Gordon said.

Kay Socks, 55, of Halfway, said she goes to Halfway Park Days every year for the chicken and the shopping.

"I like to look for unusual new crafts," Socks said. "They have some great African-American pieces, some canes. And I got some beautiful silver jewelry. This just marks the beginning of summer. It's a tradition to come here."

Archie VanNorden, president of the Lions Club of Halfway, said the group has been hosting Halfway Park Days for more than 25 years.

"We think it's an opportunity for people to enjoy a fun, family-type of day with crafts, food, entertainment," VanNorden said. "And it's a way for us to make money to support the community."

VanNorden said the Lions Club provides scholarships to area students and eyeglasses to people throughout the community. The club also is assisting with an effort to purchase new playground equipment at Lincolnshire Elementary School.

Samuel Key, vice president of the club, said he expected the event, which continues today, to draw nearly 10,000 people over the two-day period and to gross around $20,000.

Today's entertainment will include performances by The Holders from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. and the Magic of Michael T. at 2 and 4 p.m.




If you go

What: Halfway Park Days

When: Today, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Martin L. "Marty" Snook Memorial Park, Halfway

For information, call 301-739-3219

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