Crafts, food and entertainment help bring the crowds to Old Market Day in Chambersburg

Over 15,000 festival-goers attend the annual event

July 16, 2011|By ROXANN MILLER |
  • About 15,000 festival-goers packed downtown Chambersburg, Pa., on Saturday for Celebrate! The Arts at Old Market Day.
By Roxann Miller

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — To make the most of her shopping experience Saturday at Celebrate! The Arts at Old Market Day in downtown Chambersburg, Donna Starliper used her tried-and-true approach to scanning the hundreds of craft booths.

"We take one swipe up and then one swipe down. We're organized," said Starliper, who said she doesn't deviate from her shopping strategy.

The Shippensburg, Pa., resident comes every year to sample the food, listen to the entertainment and browse the more than 200 craft vendors that line Main Street between King and Washington streets.

This year, Starliper brought her friend Carol Keener of State Line, Pa.

"I've never been here before," said Keener, who works with Starliper at Penn Hall Nursing Center. "I was surprised at the size of it, and I'm impressed with the quality of the artisans."

"You can't beat the handcrafted jewelry," Starliper said. "It's timeless."

More than 15,000 festival-goers filled downtown Chambersburg for Old Market Day, which is the biggest event of the borough's ChamberFest celebration.

ChambersFest, which continues through July 30, celebrates the spirit of the people of Chambersburg who rebuilt the town after it was burned by Confederate soldiers on July 30, 1864.

Laura Cover, owner of Prim Reflections of Fayetteville, Pa., used to shop at Old Market Day, but this year, she sold hand-painted bottles that she recycled into lamps.

"It's a big draw. It's nice to come down here. It's safe," Cover said. "People like to be able to walk the streets and know that it's closed off."

Business was booming for Linda Horner of Linda's Canine Kitchen of Chambersburg.

Horner has been selling her homemade dog and cat treats for the past 12 years at Old Market Day.

"People just love to come down (to Old Market Day)," Horner said. "Even when the economy is like it is now, people will still buy for their pets. They are not going to let their pets suffer."

It was a family day for Katy and Jim Main of Chambersburg and their 3-year-old daughter, Tatum.

"I like walking around and looking at all the vendors, people watching and just getting out," Katy Main said.

After getting a caricature of Tatum, the family sampled some of the food.

"What didn't we eat?" Katy Main said. "We had hot sausage, chicken sandwich, corn dog, a funnel cake and french fries."

With the family preparing to move into a new home, Katy Main said she was getting a lot of ideas on Saturday.

"Every time I walked by something, I would hear, 'Ahh, ohh, that's cute,'" Jim Main said.

Friends Brianna Glunt and Cheyenne Dile of Chambersburg said they come mainly for the food.

"I just like looking around," Brianna said as she tried to stay ahead of a melting coffee-cup ice-cream cone.

"We just kind of people-watch and eat food," Cheyenne said. "It's an annual town thing, and there's something for everyone to look at. You can't come here and not see something you want to eat or see something you don't want to buy. There's something for everybody."

In addition to the crafts and food, there was a variety of entertainment, including The Launies with Jamie O'Brien playing Celtic music at the courthouse plaza as well as Christian rock and blues/jazz/soul music by other performers.

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