It’s almost time for summer! Maybe you are looking forward to a trip to the beach or numerous trips out back to the pool, but around here, the locals are looking forward to the festivals. The hospitals drag in vendors who set up rides. Local business people set up stands selling arts, crafts, and whatever else they think they can sell.
My favorite hospital festival is the Brandywine Hospital Strawberry Festival. First of all, I only have to drive a few miles to get there. Secondly, the hospital is the closest one to my house and whatever benefits the hospital benefits my neighbors and me. My favorite part of the festival is the food tent. Inside the tent one can purchase strawberry shortcakes, strawberry smoothies, strawberry milkshakes and anything else with strawberries in it. Not only that, but there is my favorite stand which sells gyros and souvlakies. I have been known to make these sandwiches at home, but why bother when they do such a good job and I don’t have to put in the time or energy? Also in the booth, you will find sausage sandwiches, pizza, and anything else you might find at a local fair.
In the main fair grounds, one finds rides and ticket booths. The tickets are sold in groupings. Each ride costs so many tickets. The carnies agree ahead of time what to charge and the prices are fairly reasonable. Also in the carney area are stands where one can win prizes. I have found that most games are harder than they look and the carney is going to do his best not to hand out the prize. The carney is not operating the stand to give the prizes away. He is there to make money. Also one can purchase fries and miscellaneous other fair foods that are not sold in the food tent.
Walking around the festival, one finds local musicians doing their best to entertain the crowds. Some acts are exceptionally talented, others not so talented. But everyone is there to ensure the crowd has a good time.
One year I ended up spending $700 at the fair on cookware. I love my cookware and look forward to seeing the stand each time we go there. The salesmen are different every time, but the cookware goes through limited changes. Amway calls it Queen Cookware while the fairs call it Lustre Craft. I look forward to seeing them because every so often, I want to add to my set.
What one will not find at this fair is a group of doctors standing around. That is because the doctors are in the hospital taking care of loved ones, in their offices, or home for the day. As of last year, the majority of the cars are parked across Reeceville Road in a giant field. The cost to park is approximately $2 per car.
Some other boroughs’ hold strawberry festivals, but the festivities rarely change. Every one of them offers the standard food (shortcakes, milk shakes, smoothies, etc. along with the various stands and the rides), but few offer the closing memories of the fireworks. My husband and I are privileged to live on a hill. We just go out front and watch them. It’s the only fireworks display we are fortunate enough to see from that close to our house.
The locals look forward to the festivals. They view them as the beginning of summer. Memorial Day is a nice treat right afterwards but the big treat to us will always be the festivals.