Walk down the long, steep hill of Route 88 from Coal Center and you’ll pass through a chain of small towns that run along the Monongahela River.
Tied seamlessly like beads on a string, they continue north with barely noticeable boundaries except for a few welcome signs. Beginning with Elko to the south, the sequence of small boroughs that follow includes Roscoe, Stockdale and Allenport with Long Branch at the top of Roscoe Hill.
Last November, the five communities got together to start planning the first 5 Town Fall Festival, an event that hopes to enjoy a beautiful park shared by the five communities with a total population of between 2,200 and 2,500. The park, at just under 50 acres, was established in 1962.
Scheduled from 11 a.m. to dusk on September 25 at 5 Town Park, Rich Allen Way in Allenport, the festival will feature children’s games, performances from The Wild World of Animals of Bentleyville, food and craft vendors, music by disc jockey Marty Shemansky, games of chance, a food drive, a photo booth and a movie to top off the day with popcorn and glow sticks.
The idea arose out of a few chance encounters on Election Day 2020 when Rob Deavers, president of the 5 Town Community Event Association, spoke to Roscoe Mayor Tom Wilkinson about hosting community events. Other than the annual community garage sale, held the first weekend in August, and a coordinated Halloween parade and treat or treat program, cities have had few events throughout. the year.
Hours after Deavers met with the mayor, Janelle Carpenter, a resident of Roscoe, also asked the mayor to organize something in the park. Wilkinson responded by referring her to Deavers.
“My son, Liam, plays soccer in the park, which I find very beautiful,” Carpenter said. “When I asked when he had the last festival, I found out it was 1994 for a centennial celebration.”
After contacting Deavers, the two organizers decided to start brainstorming. They held a three-person Zoom meeting, which added Marlene Pritchard of Roscoe to their ranks.
“Since then, the rise of the event has been difficult,” said Carpenter. “We went to the various borough meetings and created our own Facebook page, First Annual 5 Town Fall Festival.
In order to be able to solicit donations, the event organizers also sought recognition from the corporate and charitable offices of the Pennsylvania State Department.
With the help of the documents from Wood Accounting Services, LLC of Uniontown, they achieved the necessary recognition as a 5 Town Community Event Association. Since then, they have been able to secure funding from T and T Printing, Highway Appliance, Luntsky’s Market & More, Equipment Connection, Bryan’s Auto and Wood Accounting Services, LLC.
The festival will also feature a chili preparation that will be judged by a panel of three people. The first place winner will receive a laser engraved wooden cutting board, while the second and third place winners will receive a laser engraved wooden spoon. Roscoe United Methodist Church will also maintain a collection of non-perishable food items.
“We hope to have up to 20 suppliers and we are always looking for more,” said Carpenter. “Vendor items available for purchase include soaps and bath bombs, personalized tumblers, home decorations, wind chimes, personalized t-shirts, wooden items, spooky succulents, laser cut wooden items and much more! ”
Food available for purchase includes burgers, hot dogs and fries from Taters, a barbecue from Dirty Dick’s and homemade fudge, hard candy, chocolate coated bacon, gourmet marshmallows and apple candy from Baum Azz.
All proceeds from the festival will be donated to the 5 Town Community Event Association for future events.
“I have a whole list of shopping ideas starting with a Christmas decorating contest,” Deavers said. “As for the future [of the festival], we’re not leaving. We are only going to grow.
One of the things he hopes to do is use 3 Town Park even more. Currently, the expansive park includes two ball fields, two pavilions, a brick grill pit, two concession stands and several walking trails. If things go as planned, the park will also host the 5 annual Town Fall Festival.
“For the children growing up in our communities, we hope the festival will be something they can look forward to year after year,” said Carpenter.
Vendors wishing to inquire about the organization of the event should contact the festival organizers on the First Annual 5 Town Fall Festival Facebook page. For more information, call 724-797-1675.