Currently viewing the tag: "fireworks"

Blair Garrett

Rain or shine, the Thurmont carnivals are always a good time. June is an exciting month. You lose the brisk mornings, the temperature cranks up, and school is out for all of the kids.

June is especially exciting in Thurmont, with not one, but two, carnivals coming to town, giving people a much-needed injection of fun and excitement to start off their summer.

The Thurmont Community Ambulance Company’s annual carnival kicked off at the beginning of June without a hitch. With four days of beautiful weather and tons of great games, sunshine, rides, and bingo, it was almost impossible not to have a great time.

And, who can forget the fireworks! An event more than a millennium old, fireworks are still as captivating today as they were in ancient times. Thurmont Ambulance’s fireworks kicked off just as the light in the sky dimmed, and the finale was a sight to behold. Thurmont Ambulance Company’s Lowman Keeney said, “Our carnival was very successful this year with a gorgeous week and fireworks.”

The Annual Thurmont Firemen’s Carnival at the Guardian Hose Company Carnival grounds powered its way through some stormy weather, but that didn’t dampen the moods of excited families.

Despite some rain delays, the food was coming out hot, spirits were high, and the kids swarmed to the carnival attractions like bees to honey as soon as the clouds parted.

The Firemen’s Carnival is always highlighted by one of the most anticipated parades in Frederick County. And, for the first time since 2019, fire trucks, ambulances, and community members took to the streets to celebrate.

There was loud music, cheering, banners, and a whole lot of fun getting to see all the different people stroll through the main drag in Thurmont.

Good food and good music make for good times, and there’s been no better place to find it throughout the years than the Thurmont carnivals.  

Cover Photo: Patty Phillips’ granddaughter, Lydia, holds up her winnings from the goldfish game at the Thurmont Carnival!

A brave rider takes on the infamous mechanical bull at the Thurmont Community Ambulance Company Carnival.

The kids coaster is one of the most popular rides for kids attending their first carnival or their tenth carnival.

A family takes a fun spin on the Merry-Go-Round.

A duo of carnival-goers race to blast a target with water with the hopes to win a stuffed animal.

Kids take a fun spin on the Scrambler.

Two boys shoot for a chance to win hermit crabs.

Guests flock to food stands as the carnival grounds open.

People line the streets to see the much-anticipated Guardian Hose Company Fireman’s Parade.

A group of kids are midair in one of the most adrenaline-pumping rides at the carnival.

The spinning swings are packed with kids looking for some high-flying fun.

Photos by Blair Garrett

Deb Spalding

This year, the Emmitsburg Heritage Day Event was spectacular for visitors and town residents. The volunteers who worked on the Emmitsburg Heritage Day Committee planned all year to make the day a success. The weather was beautiful, the people were happy, and the fireworks were fabulous. Volunteer Jim Houck, Jr., said, “All (members) of our committee are truly dedicated to helping our community, especially the kids, enjoy a day of fun and games.”

Although it was originally an Emmitsburg Lions Club event, it is now a cooperative effort among multiple organizations. It is hoped that the festival will continue in the future with even more involvement from the community. Jennifer Joy, Heritage Day Committee chair, said, “It was a wonderful day because of the involvement and support of all of the town’s civic organizations, businesses, and churches that make this event possible each year. Through their generosity and commitment, we are able to provide fireworks (Emmitsburg Professional Business Association), parade (Sons of the American Legion), music (Knights of Columbus), food (SAL and Lions), field games (Lions), and kids activities (Christ’s Community Church) at the festival.”

Jim Houck and Mike Hartdagen coordinated the parade that followed the traditional route from the Doughboy on West Main Street to the square, then down South Seton Avenue. Houck boasted, “The turnout was great and we had some last-minute surprises in our line up.” The Parade was well attended and had more than forty organizations participate.  Most enjoyed were the ponies and the Harmony Cornet Band, who also regaled with their talents before and after the Memorial Event.

Through a grant from the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area, a History Art Contest was held. Coupled with donations from local organizations and donors, $1,100 in prizes was distributed to nine winners in three categories. Art Contest Winners: Elementary Division—1st Prize, Arianna Calhoun, 2nd Prize, Darren Fry, 3rd Prize, Lynzee Davis, and Honorable Mention, Abigail Mae Turner; Middle School Division—1st Prize, Gabrielle Lee Archie, 2nd Prize, Emily Grace Williams, 3rd Prize, Shae Lynn Archie Fuller, and Honorable Mention, Marques Miller; High School Division—1st Prize, Eli Fryer.

A beach week raffle was also held as a fundraiser for next year’s event, and the winner was local resident, Kendall Moore, from Pembrook Woods. Thanks to all who participated and congratulations to the Moore family!

At the Memorial event, all were touched by guest speaker, Brenda Sheaffer’s, story as someone with severe learning disabilities who struggled to make a living and be considered a contributor to society. With the help of Melwood, a non-profit organization, she has now been able to hold a position as a custodian at the National Zoo and the Auditors Building, before earning a security clearance to work at the White House complex. Also at the Memorial event, responders to Emmitsburg’s three major fires were honored and thanked for their service. Parade awards were given to “Best In” categories, and Art contest awards were given out to winners.

At the Bandstand, Miriam Warther of Fairfield, Synergy (a girl group from the Let there be Rock School of Frederick), Screaming Melina’s from Pennsylvania, and Jellyfish Jam Band (from Emmitsburg) entertained the crowd.

Sack Race winners were: Singles—Andy Walters and Addy Dodson (ages 1-4), Landon Miller and Blake Cool (ages 5-8), Joshua Wantz and Deondre Febus (ages 9-12), Josh Maze and Jayson Howard (ages 13-16), Jack McCarthy/Dave Zentz (tie) and Davey Ott (ages 17 and older); Doubles—Addie Dobson/Tierney Burns and Alyse Scarzello/Andy Walters (ages 1-4), Josh Hahn/Savannah Phebus and Robert Upchurch/Annelle Upchurch (ages 5-8), Deandre Febus/Adrian Febus and Helen Hochschild/Violet Walker (ages 9-12), McKenna Stambaugh/Alexis Cool and Cheyene Marsee/Carmella Ogle (ages 13-16), and Nathan Fritz/Brittany Fritz and Kacie Boyle/Wendy Gray (ages 17 and older).

Egg Toss winners were Kimberly Shields and Kathy Shields.

Water Balloon Toss winners were Steve Wantz, Sr. and Steve Wantz III, who tied with Dave Shields and Dave Shields Jr.

Pie Eating Contest winners were Andy Walters and Felicity Phelan (up to 4 years), Robert Upchurch and Lucien Ridenour and Josh Hahn (ages 5-8), Nate Snyder and Krystal Lane (ages 9-12), Jordan Ebaugh and John Lane (ages 13-16), and Jack McCarthy (ages 17 and older).

Watermelon Eating Contest winners were Cassie Click and Cora Krom (up to 4 years); Sarah Lagare, Thomas Love, and Robert Upchurch (ages 5-8); Krystal Lane, Matthew Know, Deandre Febus, and Nate Snyder (ages 9-12); Danielle Wilson, Hannah Kaas, and Caeley McVearry (ages 13-16); and Jack McCarthy and Jared Suit (ages 17 and older).

Casting Contest winners were Trinity Mahon (up to 4 years), Charlie Scarzell (ages 5-8), C.J. Upchurch (ages 9-12), and Jared Suit (ages 17 and older).

Car Show winners were: Best In Show Overall—Brenda Titman; Truck Division: 1st  Place—Steven Kimmel, 2nd Place—Jean Eyler, 3rd Place—Paul Best; Motorcycle: 1st Place—Robert Droneburg, 2nd Place—Wade Droneburg; Car Division: 1st Place—Stephen Kupick, 2nd Place—Greg Parry, 3rd Place—Brenda Titman, and 4th Place—Jim Hoover.

The Friends of the Emmitsburg Library held their annual book sale.  The Friends raised over $560 to support library programs and the Summer Reading Program.

Next year, the committee hopes to have a carnival and some additional attractions during the event. If anyone is interested in participating or getting involved in the planning of next year’s event, please contact Jennifer Joy at 301-447-6467 or Clifford Sweeney 301-447-1712 or email eburgheritagedays@gmail.com.
DSC_0044-(3)

Brandon Burris, Savannah Phebus, and Jayson Howard were some of the game winners during Emmitsburg Heritage Day on June 25, 2016.

Photo by Stephanie Freniere

DSC_0091-(2)

Participants in the Pie Eating Contest enjoyed the game and the sweets.

Photo by Stephanie Freniere

IMG_0434-(2)

Around 5:15 p.m., families began lining the streets, eagerly awaiting the parade to begin, a much-anticipated event each year.

Photo by Gracie Eyler
Parade-Jimmy-Click

Emmitsburg Sons of the American Legion’s Mike Hartdagen presented the Vigilant Hose Company’s Jimmy Click with a plaque of appreciation for their quick response to the house fires in Emmitsburg this past year.

Photo by Gracie Eyler

DSC_0025-(2)

Greased Pig Chase winners were Savannah Phebus (ages 1-6 years), Mathew Knox (7-11), Jayson Howard (12-16), and Brandon Burris (17 and older).

Photo by Stephanie Freniere

20160625_094255-(1)

Group shot of some of the riders from Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts (MORE), who participated in the mountain bike group rides on the Multi User Trail on Community Heritage Day.

Courtesy Photo