Day in the Park, re-enactment mix being re-created

July 12, 2010|By JULIE E. GREENE

FUNKSTOWN -- The addition of the Day in the Park to last year's Battle of Funkstown re-enactment was such a success that the combination event is returning this weekend.

A street battle, fireworks and several performances by the 97th Regimental String Band are among the weekend's highlights.

At least 125 re-enactors, almost double the number last year, are expected, along with cannons, Funkstown Councilman John Phillips III said. Phillips, Councilman Richard Gaver and former Councilman Jerry Walker are organizing the three-day event.

Activities begin Friday with re-enactors setting up camp in Funkstown Community Park and the string band expected to perform around 8 p.m. in the upper pavilion off Robert Kline Way, Phillips said.

Saturday's activities include a street battle in downtown Funkstown at 10 a.m. and Day in the Park activities in the park from 10 a.m. until after dusk, when there will be fireworks, music and dancing.


Before the street battle, re-enactors will forage through town. Starting around 8:30 a.m., they will stop by homes displaying red ribbons, signaling residents' participation, to get nonperishable foods such as fruit, breads and canned goods. Last year, re-enactors ate some of it but gave most of it to the food bank at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Phillips said. That's the plan again this year.

The street battle on Baltimore Street will be from 10 a.m. to about 11 a.m., with the street closed from the park entrance to the intersection with Antietam Street, Phillips said.

Traffic will be detoured off Alternate U.S. 40 down Green and Cemetery streets, he said.

The actual Battle of Funkstown occurred July 10, 1863, when Confederate forces kept Union forces at bay while Gen. Robert E. Lee's army was at Williamsport to retreat across the Potomac River after the Battle of Gettysburg, according to the online Historical Marker Database.

Day in the Park includes games, food, at least 20 craft vendors, an inflatable slide, airbrush tattoos, spin art and a dunk tank.

Organizers hoped to hold a bucket brigade competition for teams of firefighters, but weren't expecting enough participation to hold the contest, firefighter and Councilman Bobby Rodgers said.

The fireworks will begin at dusk Saturday, Phillips said. The string band will perform before the fireworks and afterward at the bottom pavilion, where there will be dancing.

Sunday's events begin with an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast by the Funkstown Volunteer Fire Co. Inc. in the park's upper pavilion, Phillips said.

A Civil War-period church service will be at 10 a.m. The string band will play at noon, followed by a field battle to begin in the park's east end around 2 p.m., Phillips said.

Day in the Park costs $4,350, while the re-enactment, band and fireworks cost $6,500, Phillips said. Both are being financed with hotel-motel tax revenue.

If you go ...

WHAT: Funkstown Day in the Park and Battle of Funkstown re-enactment

WHEN: July 16 to 18; Day in the Park is Saturday

WHERE: Funkstown Community Park

COST: Free admission

MORE: For a complete schedule, go to For more information, call 301-791-0948.

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