Montgomery Festival will stay a three-day event
By Judy Pochel For Sun-Times Media October 30, 2013 10:06AM
The recent Montgomery Festival drew the event's biggest crowds ever. | Judy Pochel~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: December 2, 2013 11:55AM
The annual Montgomery Festival will continue to last three days, organizers of the summer bash in the village have announced.
Totals for the 2013 event show record attendance of some 15,000 people. The event draws thousands to the community each year to watch dozens of musical performances and talent contests, organizers said. Other activities include carnival rides, ice cream eating contests and fire department water fights and more.
“The most popular thing on the survey was the fireworks followed closely behind by the parade, car show and pony rides,” said Montgomery village official Debbie Buchanan.
Organizers had their final meeting recently to discuss which new items worked well at the event this summer and prepare for the next one.
Of particular interest was the first battle of the bands competition on the Friday night of Montgomery Festival. The musical event made way for the festival to open a day earlier but also gave carnival and food booth vendors more time to open their areas.
Trustees said they wanted to keep the additional day in the 2014 event, but that vote was not unanimous.
“My staff said the Friday event was not about the family,” said Police Chief Dan Meyers.
“We bumped up the Friday staff and I think it was a big deterrent. If you have a big presence, those who notice are not there to have family fun. It is a deterrent,” said Assistant Chief Armando Sanders.
Some, though, are pleased about having the additional day for the event.
“I am happy they are keeping the three days. A lot of work goes into the set up and it makes sense to do it for three days and allowed us to bring in a new event with the extra day,” said Buchanan.
Village officials have always said the event is all about community and it is a time when people come out, gather in the heart of the village and talk with their neighbors. There are no alcohol sales and organizers work each year to make sure there is something to attract every member of the family.
In other festival business, village officials noted that The Festival of the Trees has been scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8. That seasonal event in the village includes a contest among local groups for the best decorated tree.
As usual, Santa and Mrs. Claus will come to Montgomery to turn on the lights of the village tree and officially begin the Christmas season. Local children will perform seasonal carols as the Chamber of Commerce gives out free cookies and hot chocolate inside village hall.