WAPAKONETA — The 48th annual Wapakoneta Summer Moon Festival starts Thursday downtown.
The community enjoys the four-day festival thanks in large part to sponsors, like CJ’s Pizza, who is the diamond sponsor this year.
“It brings the community together, gives back to them. That’s why we keep it free, so they don’t have to worry about scrounging up money or planning. The support of our sponsors is what’s most important because they allow us to put this on for the community for free. How everybody comes together is amazing,” said Melissa Carlin, executive director of the Wapakoneta Chamber of Commerce.
“The festival kicks off on Thursday. We have the toast to the festival at 5 p.m. on Auglaize Street. The Lima Symphony Orchestra is bringing a quartet to help us kick off the festival from 5 to 7 p.m. on Auglaize Street. We’ve asked them to play ‘Rocket Man’, moon-themed music, things like that. And one of the big things that brings a lot of people in is the annual bed races for charity,” said Carlin.
On Friday, the concessions open at 3 p.m. The Shriner’s Car Show, begins from 4 to 10 p.m. at Heritage Park, behind downtown. There are free events on Willipie Street which is dedicated to children. There are free bounce house, activities, painting and more.
“On Saturday we have our first laser light show sponsored by Scoops and Auglaize Embroidery. We have two showings at 10 p.m. for a family showing and at midnight. Everyone is going to sit on Perry Street and they put up a ton of smoke in the air and it’s just tons of lasers that go crazy, set to different music. It should be a really big hit,” said Carlin.
There will be a teen event for those children that aren’t old enough to see the bands but are too old for the children’s activities.
“I-Heart Radio is coming from 8 to 10 p.m. Saturday to Auglaize Street in the parkway. There’s no age limit. They are having a tons of giveaways. We are having a Fitbit giveaway, and they’re going to be able to do shout outs on the radio and request songs and things like that,” said Carlin.
Sunday the festival closes with a 9 a.m. volleyball tournament at the American Legion, followed by an 11:30 a.m. community worship service at Heritage Park.
“It’s going to be good, it’s going to be really great,” said Carlin.
Reach Merri Hanjora at 567-242-0511