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Good thing it's Boonesborough DAYS

After rainout, vendors, organizers expect better crowd today

After rainout, vendors, organizers expect better crowd today

September 07, 2008|By ALICIA NOTARIANNI

BOONSBORO - Wanda Heuer said Saturday marked the first time in the 37-year history of Boonesborough Days that the event was foiled by rain.

She ought to know. She has been involved with the event every year since its inception.

Heuer, 83, of Boonsboro, is president of the Boonsboro Historical Society, which hosts the festival. Boonesborough Days draws sizable crowds, with more than 150 early American art, craft and antique vendors, as well as food vendors and entertainment at Boonsboro's Shafer Memorial Park.

"I'm disappointed," Heuer said in a telephone interview late Saturday afternoon. "I can't measure what we usually have against what we had today. Generally, in years past, we've had 10,000 people. Today, we did well to have 500. There is no comparison."

Heuer said vendors from Florida, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and throughout Maryland were scheduled to participate in this year's festival. Because of predicted rain along the East Coast as a result of Tropical Storm Hanna, Heuer said about one-third of vendors decided not to attend the festival Saturday. Heuer anticipated that close to 90 percent of scheduled vendors would participate today.

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"The sun's already coming out," Heuer said Saturday afternoon. "I expect a good day."

The majority of vendors defied the forecast and set up shop in the rain Saturday morning, staying open until the rain began to pour and most shoppers dispersed.

Dick and Betty Klug, 67 and 64, of Frederick, Md., displayed their antique advertising boxes and crafts under a pavilion.

"We were kind of discouraged that it had to rain, but I'm surprised how many people did show up this morning," Dick Klug said. "I suspect we'll make up for a lot of the lost business tomorrow. I'm sure a lot of the folks who didn't come out today will come tomorrow."

Shawen Warrenfeltz, who owns Roostervane Gardens in Funkstown along with her husband, Denny, noted the hardship brought on by rain for vendors who do not have shops.

"For some vendors, this is all they do," Shawen Warrenfeltz said. "They pay to come rain or shine."

Like Klug, Warrenfeltz was pleased that some customers did brave the rain.

"There have been some hearty customers out here with umbrellas having fun, shopping and having a good time," Warrenfeltz said.

Among them were Sarah Smith, 40, of Hagerstown, her daughter, Camille, 11, and her friend, Stephanie Vanorsdale, 38, of Martinsburg, W.Va.

"I love Boonesborough Days," Smith said while bagging a newly purchased topiary. "Today was the only opportunity I could come. I wanted to see if there was anything I could pick up."

"It seems crazy, but I was hoping vendors would still be open," Vanorsdale said. "I like to look at the crafts and I found some things."

Heuer said proceeds from Boonesborough Days are used to maintain historical properties and fund other community projects. She remained optimistic about the festival.

"I feel we won't be that badly hurt," Heuer said. "If tomorrow is a good day, we'll be OK."




If you go

What: Boonesborough Days

When: Today, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Shafer Memorial Park, Boonsboro

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