"More Heritage Fair news"
Wednesday, 26 June 2013 12:25

"Food, music, parking -- and a strong finish in national contest"

by Ben Boehl

    The Dundalk Heritage Fair has been the place to celebrate America’s birthday with music, rides, games and unlimited amounts of entertainment since it debuted in 1976.
    Year 38 is expected to be no different, as the annual three-day affair runs this weekend from Friday through Sunday, with gates opening every day at noon and closing at 10 p.m.
    The official opening ceremonies, which usually include the Heritage Fair committee and elected officials, will be held on Friday at 7 p.m.
    Admission to the fair is now $7 per person and children 12 and under are free.
    The Heritage Fair committee announced in the spring that it was raising its ticket prices from last year’s price of $5.
    Dundalk Heritage Fair Association president Joe Falbo does not believe the increase will have an effect on attendance.
    “Honestly, I have not heard one person say a thing about it,” Falbo noted.
    The increase in ticket prices was a result of a large storm that ripped through the area during last year’s fair.
    The fair lost an estimated $90,000 due to damage caused by the storm.

There will be an unlimited ride pass this year; for $20, patrons can go on unlimited rides from noon to 4 p.m. of that day.
    There is also a coupon for $5 off that pass in The Dundalk Eagle on page 6 this week.
    The pass is only good for one day. A new pass must be purchased for each day, but this is the first time an  unlimited ride pass can be purchased on Saturday and Sunday too.
    “We had it only on Fridays,” Falbo said. “Now we will have it all three days.”
    Three Dog Night and Jefferson Starship will headline the many musical acts that will perform over the weekend.
    In addition to the music and rides, longtime fair stalwart Jerry Brown is expected to return with his dual acts of being a  10-foot-tall Uncle Sam (on stilts) and  as Phineas T. Waggs with his monkey pal, Django.
    The ever-popular pig races and a roving magician will be on hand, and pony rides are returning to the fair for the first time in a few years.
    A new activity this year is the Mobile Mining Experience.
    The mining experience is designed to educate children about gem mining.
    “Mobile Mining Experience proudly provides fun and educational programs and experiences for kids of all ages. Every program and activity we run has educational elements carefully designed into them,” said a statement on the Mobile Mining Experience website. “But these programs are so much fun, few even realize they are learning things too.”
    Another activity for children and adults alike is an up-close and personal look at a helicopter. The helicopter is scheduled to land at about 3 p.m. on Sunday. However; that event is tentative.
  The radio station 100.7 The Bay will also be broadcasting at the fair.
    All that fun could make a person hungry.
    Luckily there will be about 130 vendors at the fair, and many of them will be selling food. An ATM will also be at the site.
    One of the great food traditions at the Heritage Fair has been the sight and smell of the Minnick’s food tent.
    After Minnick’s was sold in 2012 and turned into the new Irish Pub and Restaurant Dun Dealgan, some thought that was the end of that tradition.
    But Dun Dealgan set up a stand last year with the Minnick’s name and was assisted by Minnick’s former owners Dan and Sonny Minnick.
    Ken Crizer, who is one of the owners of Dun Dealgan, wants to start promoting the “Dun Dealgan” name but still wants to acknowledge the old tradition.
    “I think we are going to hang our name, but we could hang out the Minnick’s name too,” Crizer said.
    Falbo said the planning is almost done and it is time for the community to come out and enjoy the fair.
    “It should be a great time. Let’s hope the weather holds up,” Falbo added.


Fair music offers a little something for everyone

Ronnie Dove will miss fair due to health issues

by Nicole Rodman

    There is a little something for everyone onstage at this year’s Heritage Fair.
    As usual, the fair’s entertainment schedule features a mix of new acts and old favorites performing a variety of musical styles.
    Headlining Friday’s musical entertainment will be the ever-popular Mahoney Brothers with their well-received Beatlemania revue.
    Other returning favorites  include country band Dean Crawford & The Dunn’s River Band and variety act Gene Vincentt & The Cruisers on Saturday, with local classic band The Gigs and blues/zydeco  group Blue Streak on Sunday.
    For Bob Fogle Sr., entertainment chair and vice president of the Heritage Fair Association, booking these returning acts each year is all about giving fairgoers what they want.
    Speaking about the Mahoney Brothers specifically, Fogle noted that he always receives positive feedback about the act as he makes his rounds at the fair each year.
    “The people love them,” he explained. “They’re a fabulous group, good to work with — the public wants them.”
    This year’s fair will also include an onstage reunion of local guitar-pop  group The Martians.
    While The Martians were a staple of the Dundalk Independence Day Parade for years, the band has made few local appearances in recent years.
    With members of the band returning to the area from across the country, the group will come together for a performance at the fair on Sunday afternoon.
    One longtime fair favorite who will not be performing at this year’s Heritage Fair is singer Ronnie Dove.
    According to the Dundalk Heritage Fair Association, Dove will not appear at the fair due to health issues.
    While there will be many familiar faces onstage at the fair this year, there are also many acts that will be performing for the first time.
    One such group, rock-pop band Faded Image, will take the Shipway stage on Friday evening.
    Fogle called the group “outstanding,” noting that Faded Image performs all over the region.
    Fogle is also excited about the Steely Dan tribute band Technicolor Motor Home, scheduled to perform on Saturday evening.
    “These guys are outstanding,” Fogle said. “You turn your back and you would swear it was [Steely Dan].”
    Other acts that are new to this year’s fair include The Regal Beagles, performing yacht rock hits from Jimmy Buffett and others on Sunday evening, and oldies group Josh & Good Old Stuff, which will take the Shipway stage on Sunday afternoon.
    The most prominent fair first-time acts, of course, are headliners Three Dog Night on Saturday night and Jefferson Starship on Sunday. (See The Eagle’s preview articles on the front page.)
    And, as always, the beer garden will feature karaoke from 2 to 5 p.m. on Friday and 2 to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
    As for how he finds the musical talent to play at the Heritage Fair each year, Fogle noted that he keeps a lookout for interesting groups.
    “I keep my eyes and ears open and I try to get a little bit for everybody,” he said.
    Throughout the year,  Fogle or his son will attend performances in an effort to find new talent to entertain fairgoers.
    Of the bands he considers for the fair, Fogle explained that he is looking for bands that are “exciting and good for the fair.”
    And, as the fair is open to all ages, acts must be clean and family-oriented.
    As always, seating for all concerts at the Heritage Fair is first-come, first-served.
    Concertgoers are allowed to bring lawn chairs and blankets to all performances.
    The entrance fee for this year’s fair, which includes  admission to any performance on the day the ticket is purchased, will be $7.
    For more information on  musical entertainment at this year’s Heritage Fair, visit www.dundalkheritagefair.com/heritagefair/


Fair places second in contest

Will receive $1,000 from Johnsonville

by Ben Boehl

The Heritage Fair is only a day away, but the committee received good news a few days early. The Heritage Fair finished second in a nationwide contest.
    In May, Dolores Bell entered the Heritage Fair in a contest sponsored by sausage producer Johnsonville Foods.
    The fair was named one of the competition’s 20 finalists as part of a contest called “Celebrate Community” in which people across the nation voted on what they thought was the best community event.
    The contest ran until June 24, and the winner was Waynestock, a music show and auction in North Creek, N.Y.
    The event will receive $10,000 from Johnsonville Foods.
    Since the Heritage Fair was in the top 10, it will receive $1,000, which makes Dundalk Heritage Fair Association president Joe Falbo happy as he prepares for the fair this weekend.
    “It’s more than we had [before the contest]. I’ll take it. I think it’s fantastic. Now maybe we can buy 1,000 umbrellas,” Falbo said, joking about the possibility of rain for this weekend’s fair.
    Falbo credits Bell for entering the contest and plans to invite her onstage to the opening ceremonies, but he heard she is not the type of person who likes the limelight.
    “I would like to have Ms. Bell onstage for the opening ceremonies. I don’t know if she would go onstage,” Falbo noted. “At the very least, I would like to give her complimentary tickets. This all happened because of her.”
    Although it was not listed on the Johnsonville website, a press release confirmed that the Heritage Fair placed second behind Waynestock.         Waynestock garnered 5,028  votes, while 4,719 votes were cast for the Heritage Fair.
    Johnsonville reported that over 156 “Celebrate Community” nominations were accepted before the field was narrowed down to 20, and that over 70,000 votes were cast.


Fair parking questions raised by ongoing dispute

Cars are not expected to be towed at fair

by Ben Boehl

    It is nothing new. Parking is an issue every year at the Heritage Fair.             While Playfield Street is the only road closed off, many of the surrounding streets have limited space for parking.
    Another headache added to the mix could be the dispute  between JMJ Properties and Blue Ocean Realty.
    A statement on the Heritage Fair website warns attendees not to use certain parking lots at the Dundalk Village Shopping Center because of the risk of being towed.
    These lots  include Shipway and Market Place, along with the lots in front of and behind 16 Center Place.
    Blue Ocean Realty bought the Dundalk Village Shopping Center from JMJ Properties for $4.6 million in September of 2011, but JMJ retained ownership of the parking lots around the shopping center.
    Jonathan Ehrenfeld of Blue Ocean Realty said his lawyer advised him against commenting on the matter.    
    Michael S. Kohen of JMJ Properties was not available for comment.
    However, a source familiar with the dispute, who asked to remain anonymous, told The Eagle that a restraining order preventing JMJ from towing any cars parked on the JMJ lots remains in place.
    Dundalk Heritage Fair Association president Joe Falbo said he was concerned about the parking and wanted to get the problem resolved before the fair.    
    He said he contacted Baltimore County police to see if any cars could be towed and they provided Falbo with the answer he wanted to hear.
    “I put a call into the police and I got them to say [that no cars will be towed from the JMJ lots],” Falbo said.
    There were no reports of cars being towed at the JMJ lots at last year’s fair.
• NOTE:  Dundalk Eagle staffers will be covering the holiday events, therefore parking in the spaces behind the Eagle office will be by permit only, both during the fair and during the parade on July 4.