Ford City festival group hopes to 'keep heritage alive'
FORD CITY — In the wake of news from its organizing committee that the annual Ford City Heritage Days festival is finished, other community members are stepping up to plan a festival to take its place, and they are seeking public input.
A meeting has been planned for 6 this evening in Ford City Public Library.
Allison Cousins, 29, of Ford City is one of the organizers and is hoping that area residents, especially those within the 20-30 age bracket, will attend to brainstorm ideas and offer suggestions.
“We need all the help we can get,” she said.
Cousins, the daughter of Mary Ann Lukehart and former Ford City Councilman Dan Cousins, said she was upset when she learned about the Heritage Days Inc. Committee's decision to dissolve the group and discontinue the festival.
“I wanted something for my daughter, Bella,” she said. “I wanted her to have the same kind of childhood I had, with the parade and fireworks.”
So Cousins took on a leadership role and is spearheading a grass-roots effort to start a family-friendly event.
Although the group has not adopted an official name, it is using the working name of Ford City Area Community Days.
Organizers seek input and cooperation from people in the borough as well as those living in neighboring municipalities.
An initial meeting, held Wednesday in the Latin American Club on Third Avenue, was attended by 10 people.
According to the meeting minutes posted on Facebook under Ford City Area Community Days 2014, the group would like to keep the word “ heritage” as part of the promotional literature and wants the phrase “Keeping our heritage alive” to be emphasized.
Initial ideas included plans to feature local talent and to attract more vendors from diverse cultural backgrounds. One suggestion was made to include a genealogy booth where presenters wearing traditional clothing could speak about their respective culture and heritage.
Don Mains of Ford City, who is helping to facilitate the growth of the new organization, said the response on Facebook has been amazing, with a lot of people offering positive suggestions and support.
Should plans for a new community festival materialize, Mains said, he intends to be on the cleanup committee for trash pickup since that is usually the committee with the fewest number of volunteers.
But for now, he and Cousins are hoping people show up tonight to offer support.
“Perhaps a new tradition can be born,” Mains said.
Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.