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Once ribbon is cut Friday, Mont Alto carnival will begin

June 11, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

MONT ALTO, Pa. - A ribbon stretched across the new fairgrounds buildings will be ceremoniously cut on the first day of the Mont Alto Fire Department Carnival.

The Friday ceremony will kick off the 33rd annual carnival, which continues through June 21 and raises money for the fire department.

Charlie Baker hopes to clean up on the last night, lock the doors of the new buildings and go home to relax. That's in contrast to the massive, equipment-heavy efforts that cleared out the Quincy Township, Pa., area the department used to rent every year.

"As soon as the carnival is over, we can step back and plan the next event," said Baker, president of the fire department and ambulance squad.

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Construction started for the department's new, 15-acre fairgrounds last August. Five buildings have been constructed behind the ambulance squad building in the 500 block of South Main Street.

On Monday, Baker purchased glass for the dime pitch and was awaiting the hookup of restaurant equipment. Forty kitchen volunteers will spend their carnival hours making perennial favorites like hot dogs, hamburgers, Italian sausage, country ham, hoagies, fish sandwiches, crab cakes, soups and funnel cakes.

"We're going to have salads this year. We're going to try a garden salad and a chicken salad," Baker said.

Also, the crew will be offering Philadelphia-style cheesesteaks for the first time, he said.

The biggest difference visitors will notice from the old operations will be service-related, Baker said.

"After 30-some years of things we wished for and things we put in ... it'll be much better service," Baker said. "It's got to be the best facilities in the state because we went all out."

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