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Community News

Richfield celebrating community pride

8/7/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

Dan McCallister rings the bell with a hefty swing at last year’s Richfield Community Day. This year’s event will include many activities for children and adults.
A game from last year’s sand volleyball contest, sponsored by the Bath-Richfield Kiwanis Club, is shown above. Sand volleyball will be offered again this year.
Photos: Ken Crisafi
RICHFIELD — Richfield’s Community Day celebration will include a weekend full of events starting tomorrow, Aug. 8, and ending with the actual Community Day Aug. 10.

According to Richfield Recreation Director Ruth Jocek, this annual event is an important way for residents past and present to celebrate their community pride.

“Richfield has a great sense of community,” she said. “Even people who have lived here before and moved away come back for Community Day.”

Jocek said there is “always a grand turnout” for Community Day, which is sponsored by the Bath-Richfield Kiwanis Club.

“Somewhere between 4,000 and 5,000 come for the day,” she said. “I love that you get to see a lot of people that you haven’t talked to all year and you get to meet new people, too.”

The weekend will kick off with a parade, starting at the former Richfield Elementary School, at 6:30 p.m.

“We like to say it’s the largest and the noisiest, because we have trucks and horns and everything,” Jocek said. “It’s really a lot of fun. And the kids almost get more candy than they do for trick-or-treating.”

The parade is slated to run for half an hour to 45 minutes, she said, and then the fun will travel to Richfield Woods Park, located at 4100 Broadview Road.

“There’s a party in the park that lasts until dark,” Jocek said. “This year, we’re having a disc jockey, and there will be plenty of food.”

The festivities Aug. 9 will get started at 8 a.m. with the Community Day Sprint, a 5K run/walk benefiting the Eastwood Preserve gardens. The cost to take part in this event is $20 in advance or $25 on the day of the race.

The Community Day Sprint will be immediately followed by the Community Day Scamper, a mile-long run/walk. The cost to take part in the scamper is $15 in advance or $18 on the day of the race.

The sprint takes participants through Richfield Woods Park to the Eastwood Preserve and back, while the scamper travels through the park. Last year, about 40 people took part in the events, and Jocek said the goal is to increase that number.

“It’s a beautiful run that really shows off our great trails,” she said.

Also starting at 8 a.m. Aug. 9 is the Bath/Richfield Explorers Pancake Breakfast at the fire station, 4450 W. Streetsboro Road. That event is slated to run until 1 p.m. The Safety Services Open House will take place at the fire and police stations from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. This year, the open house will feature SWAT specialty vehicles, with an emergency extrication demonstration scheduled between 9 and 10 a.m. The University Hospitals’ MedEvac helicopter will land at 11:30 a.m., Jocek said.

Next up will be the annual steak fry hosted by the Sons of Amvets Squadron No. 176 and the Meridian Sun Masonic Lodge No. 69. The steak fry will take place from 4 to 8 p.m. at Richfield Woods Park.

Steak dinners for adults cost $18 in advance or $20 at the door. A children’s meal of a hamburger and chips will cost $5. Advance tickets are available at Richfield Auto Center, Exit 11 Tire Service, Jerry’s Sunoco, Richfield Recreation Center, Constantine’s Garden Center, The Bake Shop in Ghent, the Amvets Hall or from any Son of Amvets or Mason.

The weekend will wrap up Aug. 10 with “a lot of different activities happening” at Richfield Woods Park starting at 11 a.m., Jocek said.

“We have a pet show, Mr. Puppet, a bubble gum blowing contest, a frog jumping contest, the Doppel Adler Band, a hula hoop contest, a zucchini contest, a raffle, the Universal Toads band and much more,” she said. “From 7 to 9 p.m., we have the Blues Brothers tribute band called The Soul Men with Shady Drive Band. We will have great special events food — all that good stuff you probably shouldn’t be eating, we’ve got it. We’ve got inflatables for the kids to bounce on and we’ve got a train ride that will go around the lake. We have hole-in-one and corn hole contests, as well as sand volleyball with bracket play.”

The park will be free to enter on Community Day, Jocek said, but there will be a cost associated for taking part in some of the events.

“There are costs for the rides, but there will be an all-day wristband to ride all the bouncies,” she said. “It’s $10 and you can ride them all day until we shut them down at about 6:30 p.m.”

Jocek said the evening — and the Community Day festivities — will conclude with a fireworks display at approximately 9:30 p.m.

For additional information, including a full schedule of events, go to www.richfieldvillageohio.org or call 330-659-5818.

Excluding the fireworks, all events are scheduled to take place rain or shine, Jocek said.

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