LIMA — Michelle Petties came to eat. Eleven-year-old Amya Gossett came to experience Imagination Station. And Dave Maxwell came to hear and introduce his daughter to an old favorite band.
Town Square in downtown Lima was bustling Saturday as people came down to Square Fair; some stopping in throughout the day and others coming early and staying until after Brownsville Station took the stage and fireworks hit the the sky.
“I just like the fact that we have something downtown, and it is bringing people downtown, drawing crowds down here,” Petties said after starting her eating binge with roasted corn. She was next looking to make her own Pixie Stick and buy a wire art ring she saw earlier.
Matt Myers’ three children were busy doing puzzles set up by COSI, but Dad knew he would soon be digging into his wallet to start purchasing dinner and treats.
“I have been hearing a lot of talk about funnel cakes and cotton candy,” said Dad, who brings his family to Square Fair every year. “It is a beautiful day outside, so I thought I would take the kids out and get something to eat and enjoy the weather.”
Mother Nature didn’t cooperate as well Friday night. The same was true last year, when Brownsville Station was supposed to perform but couldn’t because of rain.
Music played all day leading up to Brownsville Station. The sound is what brought Jared Benroth and friends down to grab some beer and relax.
“We thought we would come and enjoy the music a little bit,” he said.
Music and other talents also took the stage throughout the day in the children’s area. A crowd watched closely as an escape artist got himself out of a straightjacket. Next came Jeanne’s Dance Studio, with performances from wee dancers to teenagers.
“They get a little nervous, but get pretty excited too,” said instructor Eileen Shellenbarger.
The dance studio has been performing at Square Fair for years. Ten-year-old Carley Shellenbarger has been dancing for six years. Her age group danced to “Mamma Mia” Saturday.
“I think it is fun because we are entertaining people,” she said before going on stage in front of a growing crowd.
Maxwell’s daughter, Hanna, and her friend, Corinne Leyman, both 12, found themselves caught between two jugglers performing on the street. The two said it was fun becoming part of the act, but a little nerve wracking.
“I saw those pins go by and thought, oh no,” said Hanna.
The family planned to stay until the fireworks, with Dad hoping Hanna might be a Brownsville Station fan by the end of the night.
“She hasn’t got into it yet,” he said with a laugh.
With a tiger painted on her face, Amya spent time at Imagination Station and was eager to make a bracelet and some Pixie Sticks. Grandma Jan VonLehmden, of Ottoville, said it was the family’s first time at Square Fair. She and her husband decided to come because Amya was visiting.
“We are really enjoying it,” she said.
Finishing an elephant ear and with lots on her mind to do next, Amya wasn’t sure anything could top her favorite so far.
“I dunked someone in the dunk tank twice. That was my favorite because I got to dunk them,” she said.
“And you got wet,” Grandma added with no argument about that perk from Amya.