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Big holiday weekend in Connellsville arrives with plenty of events

| Monday, May 20, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
This hanging flowering moss ball is one of the many unique items that members of the Connellsville Area Garden Club will be selling on Saturday at the Geranium Festival.

The big holiday weekend has arrived and all the events are ready to go. The Geranium Festival will offer plenty of free entertainment, shopping and delicious food as well as the many beautiful geraniums at such a great price. The Garden Club members want to remind everyone that the flowers don't go on sale before 10 a.m. The Molinaro Band will be heading down Crawford Avenue from IC Church at 9:30 a.m., so the streets are sure to be lined with onlookers. The band will then play marches at Lions Square for awhile after that. The always popular pet parade will follow at 11 a.m. and that is fun to watch. At noon, visitors can see the Princess contestants dressed in their finest at the Gazebo as the judges have the difficult task of picking a winner from the cute 4-6-year-olds. Taney Basinger, a sensational 9-year-old singer from Bullskin will entertain starting at 1 p.m. Shelly McCombie will start her show at 2 p.m. No Holden Back will play music throughout the day, so there will be no “down time” for all that free entertainment. Bring a chair to spend time enjoying the performers. Wait until you see all the terrific flower creations the Garden Club members have made to sell — very, very unique.

The weekend starts with the 4th annual Yough Country Symposium at Yough River Park on Friday. There will be plenty of good information and discussion about Connellsville as a Hub for the Trail. If you want to enjoy breakfast and lunch there, too, be sure to get your $15 into ArtWorks by Wednesday. And while you're there, why not buy your ticket for that night's Sammy Brooks Band performance at the Edwin S. Porter Theater. These four young men from Connellsville really know how to entertain a crowd. The cost is only $15 and includes refreshments following the concert.

Very important. Wednesday is the last day to register for the Golden Reunion being held Sunday at East Park. The event is from noon-4 p.m. with a catered lunch being served at 1 p.m. by Miller's Catering of Connellsville. The food was very good last year and will to be this year, too, I'm sure. Sharon and Gordon Miller and staff always do an outstanding job. The big band sounds of The Wally Gingers Orchestra also starts at 1 p.m. The cost is only $25 and you will get to see a lot of friends. There will be a shuttle from the Fairview Avenue city parking lot for those who want to park there and be driven down into East Park. For those who park at East Park, a golf cart will bring you into the park. Golf cart drivers will be Lou Durbin and John Shields; thanks to them for volunteering their time. Register and pay online at or at ArtWorks, 139 W. Crawford Ave. “We look forward to a great weekend, starting with Friday's informational symposium and concert, the Garden Club's Geranium Festival, the second Golden Reunion and Monday's parade. There are so many opportunities to meet up with old friends and make some new ones. We hope that everyone will take advantage of the many events that are available in Connellsville,” said Michael Edwards, president of Fayette County Cultural Trust.

On Monday, the Memorial Day parade, followed by the program at the War Memorial, begins when the marchers move out from West Side shortly after 9:30 a.m. to the 10 a.m. bridge ceremony and then on through town, turning left on Pittsburgh Street. This parade has many participants, including the Mighty Falcon Marching Band and the Connellsville Elementary Band. There will be two Junior ROTC units, dignitaries and those representing the military. It is important that a good crowd turns out for both the parade and the program. Dunbar's parade is also that morning and the Connellsville Junior High Band will be in it.

The CAHS Patriots want to thank everyone who helped make this year's auction a success. This was our best year with a total of $15,000 raised through all efforts associated with the event. To those who donated, we say, “Thank you. You've made this all possible.” To those who worked the event, we say, “Thank you. Without you this event wouldn't have happened.”

To those who attended, bought food, drinks, baked goods and cast the winning bids, we also say, “Thank you and bless you,” said Linda Shearer. The Patriots will be set up at the Geranium Festival Saturday. They will be selling, in addition to good food and baked goods, raffle tickets on a beautiful patriotic handmade 84-by-90-inch quilt with the drawing on June 1, three raffle items that will be given away that day, and patriotic items.

Conn-Area Catholic School's 16th annual golf outing will be held at Donegal Highlands Golf Course on June 2. Registration begins at noon with a shotgun start at 1:30 p.m. Individual golf package costs $95, which includes driving range privileges, cart and green fees, snacks and beverages, New York strip steak dinner, prizes and gifts. Sponsorships are being accepted. Contact Ceal Solan at the school for additional information, 724-628-5090 or email

The Carnegie Free Library has programs for every age starting in June. Check out their website,, call 724-628-1380 or stop in, there are some very interesting things going on.

Congratulations to the 2013 graduates of Connellsville and Geibel and an extra special congratulations to my nephew, Michael McFadden of CAHS and my cousin, Ryan Robson from Geibel. Where did those years go?

The Holy Name Society of Immaculate Conception Church in Connellsville is having a pancake and sausage breakfast 7:30 -11:30 a.m. June 2, in the church social hall. The cost is $4 for adults and $1 for children under 10 years old.

The Animal House is holding a special celebration from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. June 8. There will be lots going on with Pet Photos by Joni, pet adoptions through local shelters, a rabies clinic until 1 p.m., hot dogs and pop $1 each, a free kid's craft station and door prizes. There are some really, really, really interesting animals there — reptiles and fish of all kinds — and lots of nutritious food choices for your pet. Shopping at Animal House is a good way to support local business and much of what they sell is made in the USA. The store is located at 129 N. Eighth St.

Conn-Area Catholic School is currently selling a calendar ticket for the month of June. Cost of the ticket is $10. Each ticket has two 3-digit numbers drawn on the Pa. Daily Lottery Number at 7 p.m. You have a chance to win 30 times in June. Cash prizes range from $50 to $200. For tickets, call the school at 724-628-5090 or stop at the school office, 613 E. Crawford Ave. The school entrance faces Dr. John Ellis' office.

The Connellsville Area Historical Society has weekly hours available for genealogical research in the Connell Room on the second floor of the Carnegie Free Library. Volunteers Jackie Jones, Eileen Burton and Gerry Williams can assist you in your research. Hours are: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursdays. You can make an appointment by calling 724-628-5640 and leave a message or just drop in during those hours. The library has an elevator.

The Connellsville Area Historical Society also wants to remind you that its Balsley Pavilion is available to rent for graduation parties, family reunions, birthday parties, etc. It is a beautiful pavilion with a fabulous view of the Youghiogheny River. The Spring House on the property has a refrigerator, stove and private restroom as part of the price. It costs $75 to rent the facility. Call 724-628-5640 and leave a message, a volunteer will get back to you.

Kids Fest, sponsored by Connellsville Lions and Bud Murphy's, will have the Pitt Mobile Science Lab back at Rock Starz parking lot on June 10. There was huge interest in it last time. This visit will feature the theme, “Living With Bugs.” There will be an awesome juggler, a clown, face painting, balloons, fun, games and the chance to win one of three Geyer Performing Arts Center “Camp Curtain Call” full tuitions singing karaoke. This is a free event for the community and it gets bigger every year. Bring your family to enjoy all the fun from 5-9 p.m.

The Ford Tri-Motor will be at the Joseph A. Hardy Connellsville Airport on tour June 6-9. Featuring Air Zoo's 1929 5AT Tri-Motor, it is free to go see it and take pictures. If you want, you can take a ride, too. You can save $5 by using your Buy Local Card and booking your flight at in advance. Tickets purchased each day at the airport are $5 more for adults. This is really big for aviation enthusiasts and those interested in history, and it will be interesting for everyone. Local sponsorship for the event is by Ford Business Machines and Davies Ford. They invite you to experience the Golden Age of Aviation.

Finley's Fighters have really been into the Penguin Playoff spirit, especially Finley's grandpa, Ted. They have received a generous donation from the Pittsburgh Penguin Hockey Organization, a signed Evgeni Malkin jersey to raffle off. It comes with a certificate of authenticity. Tickets are $10 each. The winning ticket will be drawn at Finley's Aug. 24 fundraiser at Yough River Park, but the ticket-holder does not have to be present to win. The proceeds will be used to help the RDH12 Fund For Sight. Those who want to buy a ticket can email

Don't forget to vote today.

Mark your calendars for these upcoming events: May 24, Symposium and Sammy Brooks Band; May 25, Geranium Festival; May 26, Golden Reunion; May 27, Memorial Day Parade; June 1, Bike For Books; June 2, Conn-Area Golf Outing; June 4, Treknology at ArtWorks; June 8, Puppet Adventure at ArtWorks and Animal House celebration; June 10, Lions Kids Fest; June 13, Highlands Hospital Bud Murphy's Race for Autism; June 13, 14, 15, CTVFD Fun Fest; June 22, Lions Bike With Buds; June 23, Lions Square Summer Concert Nashville Past; June 29, Art on the Yough; June 29&30, Braddock's Crossing; June 30, Lions Square Summer Concert Sugar Mountain.

If you have a local upcoming event that you would like mentioned in

this column, email it well in advance so I can include it at

Nancy Henry is a Connellsville resident.

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