Scarecrow Festival to be held Sept. 21
AKRON — Come one, come all to the 19th annual Great Akron Scarecrow Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, at Akron City Park.
“The Scarecrow Festival has become a tradition to kick off the fall season with activities including the scarecrow decorating contest, homemade food and baked goods, kids’ games and activities, a petting zoo, and dozens of craft vendors,” said LeAnne Philips, member of the Akron Friendship and Service Club who organizes the event.
The Akron Friendship and Service Club is a nonprofit charitable and service organization that is part of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs and is supported by 40 local members.
This year’s event will kick things off at 8 a.m. with registration of the scarecrows until 9:30 a.m. The vendors, activities, food tents and scarecrow judging will open to the public at 10 a.m.
Family activities will include: kids games, face painting and glitter tattoos, inflatables, a petting zoo, kiddie train rides, more than 50 vendors, and an array of food from hot dogs and taverns, to homemade pies, to tacos in a bag, to baked goods.
At noon, is the centerpiece of the festival when the scarecrow decorating winners are announced.
Philips said this year, there will be more than 20 awards and more than $1,000 in cash prizes up for grabs.
Scarecrows are judged in three age categories: preschool through 5th grade, 6th through 12th grade, and adult. A “Best of Show” winner will be named and festival goers can vote for their favorite scarecrow from 10-11:30 a.m. at the festival information booth.
“New for 2019 are the Club’s Choice awards, which are $25 cash prizes in 10 categories,” Philips stated.
Categories include: Most Creative, Best “Scare” Crow, Best School Spirit, Best Community Spirit, Nature’s Harvest, Best Use of Recycled Materials, Most Clever, Most Patriotic, Best Book Character, and Best Movie or TV Character.
This year’s festival will also introduce a Scarecrow Team Challenge, where teams will build a scarecrow at the festival beginning at 1 p.m. The winner will be voted on by attendees at 2 p.m. The winning team will win $100, with $50 going to the second place finishers.
“Following the 2018 festival, more than $10,000 was donated to projects, programs and events in Akron and Westfield, including a donation to the Akron swimming pool improvement fund, sponsoring the children’s theater performance at the Akron Opera House, news books and equipment at the Akron Public Library, summer music programs at Birdie & Carol Harris School of Performing Arts, and improvements at Akron Children’s Center and Akron Golf Club.
Philips stated the club also supports scholarships for students, classroom programs and several student groups at Akron-Westfield Community School, including National History Day participants, FFA, Art Club, and the Dance Team.
Philips noted the festival is open to everyone and there is no pre-registration required. Contest rules can be found at www.AkronScarecrowFestival.com.