Kittanning’s Fort Armstrong Folk Festival endures storms – Tribune
August 4, 2014 - table lamp
Wearing a feathered top and thick, round-frame glasses, Bill Vlasic sparked a gas-powered fire along a Allegheny River and cranked a feverishness to 1,300 degrees.
About a dozen congregation of a Fort Armstrong Folk Festival in Kittanning’s Riverfront Park watched with awe as he meticulously disfigured dual potion tubes opposite any other over a flame. Within 5 minutes, a fire licked one of a tubes underneath his instruction into a figure of a sea turtle about a distance of a walnut.
Vlasic’s admirers applauded as he coolly close down a fire and placed his work on a list alongside a dozens of other flare work pieces he’s offered during a festival.
â€œI’ve had a lot of practice,â€� pronounced Vlasic, 82. â€œI’ve been doing this for a prolonged time.â€�
Vlasic has participated as a businessman during a Fort Armstrong Folk Festival annually, yet fail, for a past 41 of a 43 years. He is, by far, a longest-tenured businessman during a festival, roving any year from his home in Mt. Vernon, Ohio, to sell a latest Vlasic Glass pieces.
He was creatively recruited to attend in a festival in 1973 by a event’s founder, who saw his displays during a identical festival in Youngstown, Ohio. What keeps him entrance back, he said, are a â€œfriendly people and a park’s pleasing setting.â€�
â€œWhere else can we get this?â€� he said, gesturing toward a tide as it gleamed in a sunlight. â€œThe care is unequivocally good here, too. we go to a garland of these all via a area, and they’re not all as good orderly as this is.â€�
Jessica Coil, a festival’s executive director, pronounced some-more vendors participated in this year’s festival than any other. There were 63 vendors in a artist marketplace and 18 food vendors during a festival, that kicked off Thursday and ran by Sunday night.
Had it not been for a few thunderstorms during a weekend, Coil said, a festival would have expected brought in some-more congregation than ever before.
â€œWe’re unequivocally gratified with a turnout,â€� she said. â€œWe were jam packaged on Thursday and Friday. We slowed down a good understanding with a storms on Saturday, though, and we got a late start on Sunday with a morning storm, yet afterwards it unequivocally picked behind adult again.â€�
Sean Fox, who’s sole sell from his Greensburg-based association Unique Magnetic Jewelry during a festival for a past 5 years, pronounced he looks brazen to it each year as an event to enhance his clientele.
Like Coil, he believes a storms led to a dump in participation, yet was confident altogether with a turnout.
â€œThe storms unequivocally hurt, yet we always do unequivocally good here,â€� he said. â€œThe people are so accessible around here. we have people who come adult to me and they know me by name now.â€�
Among a festival’s regulars is Kittanning’s possess Lori Luke, who, during 54, hasn’t missed a Fort Armstrong Folk Festival given she was 10 years old. She spent each day final week during Riverfront Park to collect adult some food or crop a merchandise, she said.
For her, a festival is some-more than a fun approach to spend a afternoon. It’s partial of a lifeblood of a borough.
â€œIt brings Kittanning behind to life,â€� she said. â€œI know people who devise reunion weekends around a festival or make skeleton to come behind to see everyone. It’s partial of a town’s identity. It’s a good tradition.â€�
Along with a dozens of jewelry, art and food tents set adult along a river, a festival featured a solid tide of party on a park’s dual stages. The acts enclosed all from stone performances to fiddle contests and from invertebrate shows to feats of strength.
On Saturday, a sleet dissolute in time for a fireworks uncover during 10 p.m., Coil said.
â€œIt was good to get that in,â€� she said. â€œOver a whole 4 days, though, we consider people had an event to see some good party and exhibits. We work all year around to put this together, so it’s good when it works out like this.
â€œIt’s an critical thing for Kittanning and a area during large.â€�
Braden Ashe is a staff author for Trib Total Media. He can be reached during 724-226-4673 or firstname.lastname@example.org.