Celebrate West Hartford has been a not-to-be-missed event in the region for more than a quarter century, and has grown from a small town fair to a two-day festival which includes something for everyone.
The 26th annual Celebrate West Hartford will be held on Saturday, June 9, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, June 10 from noon to 6 p.m. The event annually attracts more than 30,000 people during the course of its two day run, including town residents and tourists who come to West Harford to enjoy the food, fun, music and crafts the festival has to offer.
“We’re delighted that our signature event has evolved over the years from a small community event to an award-winning regional festival that attracts visitors from near and far,” said Angelo Faenza, chair of the event.
Myriad exhibitors from community organizations, clubs, town services and local businesses will be on hand to offer information and free activities for families and children.
“The event is a great vehicle for community engagement. People enjoy learnng about the wide range of services available to them through non-profit or business exhibitors,” said event coordinator Helen Rubino-Turco. “At the same time, they reconnect with friends from all over town.” An amusement park will also provide a wide selection of rides for children of various ages.
A juried arts and crafts show, featuring the original works of more than 175 master artists and crafters from all over the country, is a main attraction. The show includes fine jewelry, pottery, woodwork, sculpture, textiles, glasswork, art, apparel and more.
According to Barbara Belmont, arts and crafts show director, “The arts and crafts show has become one of the top showcases in New England for the exhibition and sale of highly original arts and crafts created both by regional artisans and those who travel great distances to participate.”
Music plays an important role at the event as well. West Hartford’s award-winning middle school and high school bands will play throughout Saturday afternoon. On Sunday, the Show Stage performances start at noon with Latanya Farrell and the B Styles Band playing through to 1:30 p.m. They are followed by Steve Smith and the Nakeds from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. and a closing performance by Sugar from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Celebrate West Hartford’s large and diverse food court will include a selection from several of West Hartford’s highly acclaimed restaurants and caterers, such as , , Yosi Kosher Catering, , J’s Crab Shack, , and . In addition, a wide range of festival favorites including hot dogs and hamburgers, pizza, fried veggies, ice cream and fruit smothies will be offered.
On Sunday, the 25th running of the 5K road race starts at 9:30 a.m. from the Whole Foods parking lot. Registration is $30 per runner. For the young runners ages 10 and under, there’s the Kids’ Fun Run for $5 per child, which starts at 8:30 a.m. Registration for both races begins at 8:00 a.m. Proceeds from the race benefit the Leisure Services Scholarship Fund for children who can’t affort summer camp.
Celebrate West Hartford is open to the public and is held rain or shine. There is no admission charge and ample parking is available in the Town Center Garage at 29 South Main Street.
Visit www.celebratewesthartford.com for more information on the event.