DUKE CENTER, Pa. - Organizers of this weekend's Old Home Days event expect the festival will once again have some of the best activities and fireworks show in the area.
The festival will be held from today through Sunday and will include food and concession stands, games, children's rides, pony rides, bingo games, arts and crafts booths and historical displays.
Mike Miller, president of the Old Home Days committee and the Otto Township Chamber of Commerce, said that the fireworks show, as in the past, is expected to be one of the best in the area. He said the show will be held at dark Saturday.
Mr. Miller said the Old Home Days committee and the chamber of commerce merged this year and worked together with the community in raising funds for the fireworks show.
"We have had several fundraisers throughout the year; there are food sales at Old Home Days where we sell Italian sausage and roast beef sandwich" with proceeds going to the fireworks show, Mr. Miller said.
In addition, volunteers walk throughout the crowds seeking donations and some ride four-wheelers throughout the surrounding grounds collecting funds.
Mr. Miller said Greg English will conduct the show and will be assisted by volunteers in setting it up.
The fireworks show typically attracts between 5,000 and 7,000 people, and the other festivities pull in another 1,000 to 2,000 visitors.
Mr. Miller said any excess money that is raised through the event is used for other local efforts in the community.
"Most recently we purchased 50 American flags for flagpoles in the community, and we help families during the holidays and provide scholarships for students," Mr. Miller said.
Activities will begin today at 6 p.m. when the fire department sponsors a steak bake at the fire hall. There also will be pony pulls in the township park and a lip sync contest from 6 to 8 p.m. for children through the age of 18 on the park stage. Two winners from the categories of age 9 and under, 10 to 12, and 13 to 18 will be selected by judges. Contestants should dress in costume and bring their own CDs.
There will also be a dance on the park stage with music by "2 Hour Notice" and there is an admission fee.
Saturday's activities will open with a round robin volleyball tournament beginning at 9 a.m. at the Otto-Eldred High School track field. A co-ed, one-pitch softball tournament at 9 a.m. also will be held at Sullivan Field in Eldred. Winning teams from the double-elimination event will play at 9 a.m. Sunday at the Otto Ball Field and proceeds benefit Eldred Girls' Softball.
Organizers said children's rides and games will be held from noon to 10 p.m. The parade line-up is scheduled for 11 a.m. and will begin marching on Main Street at noon.
In addition, registration for Saturday's car show will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and the awards ceremony will be held at 4 p.m.
Other activities during the day include a tractor pull at 1 p.m. at the Otto Township Park and Quarter Bingo at the Otto Park Pavilion.
Musical entertainment will be provided on the park stage by Kathy Sullivan and AJ Curtis playing acoustical guitars at 6 p.m. Music to dance by will be performed by the John Doe Band from 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.
On Sunday, a Lions Club chicken barbecue will be held at 11 a.m. in the township park, and a Bluegrass Jamboree will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the park stage.