It rained on their parade, but at least it didn’t stop it. Already postponed from Saturday, Oct. 8, the Ewing Township and College-sponsored Community Fest was held on Sunday, Oct. 9 despite the slight showers and cloudy skies.
The day started off with a bang – of the drums, that is. Family and friends from Ewing Township braved the damp weather and came out to support the members of the Ewing High School marching band. Playing in front of Loser Hall, the music could be heard from across campus.
Vendors and organizations of all kinds were represented at the Fest.
From political organizations and religious groups to Boy Scouts and elementary school cheerleading teams, all had something to offer, whether it was cookies or information.
“It’s like trick-or-treating for adults,” Susan Unger, a children’s librarian from the Ewing Library, said.
Kiosks offered everything from women’s bags and jewelry to massages and activities for children.
While some vendors felt like there was a good community turnout, some were a little disappointed, but realized that nothing could be done about the conditions.
“It’s hard on a day like today,” a member of Pennington Family Chiropractic, which was offering spinal and posture screening, said.
This year’s Community Fest theme was Celebrating Women in Our Community.
Women in Learning and Leadership had a booth with activities such as matching pictures of influential women and their biographies. They also tried to encourage more women to vote by offering voter registration forms.
Several sororities were represented at the Fest as well, trying to raise awareness about women’s issues. Delta Phi Epsilon offered information about the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders.
Catherine DeTrizio, a junior business management major and member of Delta Phi Epsilon, said she felt that it was important to reach out not only to members of the College community, but also to members of the town.
Groups such as the White Ribbon Campaign and Amnesty International were supporting the end of violence against women. Amnesty International even had a petition to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.
Susan Adams, a volunteer and community events coordinator, commented about the College’s relationship with Womanspace.
“(This) is the college in the area with the biggest support for Womanspace,” she said, adding that a large number of students want to intern with the organization.
Adams pointed out that it is not only female students who want to get involved. There are quite a few male students, who she feels “really learn a lot by volunteering with (Womanspace).”
Entertainment was available for people of all ages. The B Street Band made everyone want to fall in love with a Jersey girl as they paid tribute to Bruce Springsteen, and Mandorico added a little Latin flavor to the outdoor festivities.
However, the family entertainment in Brower Student Center appeared to be the most popular. Performers such as Mr. Ray and Miss Amy Otey were well-liked by the younger crowd. Children, as well as their parents, were dancing and singing along.
“I never thought my fan base would all be under six years old,” Mr. Ray, a singer for many years, said.
The student center was full of activities geared toward children from the Ewing community. Face-painting and pumpkin-painting were very popular.
Other activities included silly putty making, sponsored by the Student Chemist Association, and Henna tattoos given by the Asian American Association.
Ewing Township schools also got involved in the Community Fest activities.
The Lore Elementary School advanced band played before a good-sized crowd. The fifth-grade students were conducted by Molly Jensen. Jensen said that the majority of them have only been playing for about a year, and a few for only a few weeks. All the children were excited, but one girl admitted to being “a little nervous.”
The elementary schools were not the only ones represented in the festivities.
Ewing High school art teacher Renee Egan was leading in the painting of a large banner that was “celebrating diversity.” The finished product will be hung in the high school.
“It was really muddy, but enjoyable,” Jessica LaMotta, freshman history and secondary education major, said. “I think that it is good that the College does something with this community.”
“It was nice to see so many families here with children at the College,” Stefanie Zitelle, freshman open options major in the School of Culture and Society, said. “It really reminds you that we are not only here to learn, but to also serve the community.”