Thursday, August 26, 2004

Florence Y'all fest on hiatus, but not parade



By William Croyle
Enquirer contributor

FLORENCE - The pageants and parade are back this year, but y'all will have to wait until next year for the rest of the fun.

The Florence Y'all Festival - an annual Labor Day weekend event since 1980 that included food booths, music and fireworks - has been put on hiatus this year as the city prepares for a new and improved festival in 2005.

The all-volunteer committee that organized the event was losing money in recent years and struggling to find volunteers.

The committee voted this summer to turn it over to the city.

"Attendance was getting low and it kind of needed a shot in the arm, so they asked the city for help," said Vanessa Lenear, parks and recreation administrator.

The pageants and parade will go on.

The pageants will be Aug. 28 and Sept. 4 at the Florence Mall and the Florence Government Center, respectively. The parade on Ky. 18 is Sept. 5 at 2 p.m.

Past festivals were four days long and held on Main Street. While the city supplemented the event with police protection and by closing streets, the entire weekend was coordinated and run by volunteers - an undertaking that required too much time and money.

"We know it will be a disappointment to a lot of people, but we thought maybe this is a good time to make changes and make it bigger and better next year," said Mayor Diane Whalen.

Next year's event will be coordinated in conjunction with the city's 175th anniversary. Planning meetings will begin next month.

Whalen said the city will recruit former festival committee members who want to continue to volunteer, then public input will be sought on how long the festival should be, where it should be and what events it will include.

Pageants and parade

• Miss Florence (ages 17-21) and Miss Teen Florence (ages 13-16) pageants will be 1 p.m. Saturday at the Florence Mall. Register by Friday.

• Little Miss Florence (ages 4-8), Little Mr. Florence (ages 4-12) and Junior Miss Florence (ages 9-12) pageants will be 1 p.m. Sept. 4 at the government center. Register by Sept. 4.

• The parade is 2 p.m. Sept. 5. It will run from the government center to Turfway Road. •  Registration forms available at the government center. Call (859) 371-5491 for information.

---

E-mail williamcroyle@yahoo.com




TOP LOCAL HEADLINES
Allen admits to affair with employee
Kmart victim's family baffled by shooting
Smoking ban debate begins
Lawsuit: Public Defender's Office fails
Iraqi girl's open-heart surgery called a success
Pain-control treatment found in need of reform
Middletown Guard unit may be heading home
Gay marriage poll a surprise
Baby starved to death; mother sent to prison
Death sentence upheld by Ohio Supreme Court
Dentists aid victims of domestic violence
T-shirt slogan 'cruel,' W.Va. governor says
Officials link casings to suspect
Kenmore man dies after police scuffle
Food's ready; there's no need to stop driving
Judge extends timber sales ban
Cleves man, 24, dies in single-car crash
Local news briefs

KENTUCKY HEADLINES
Sewer plant a step closer
Owls culprits in cat deaths
Florence Y'all fest on hiatus, but not parade
Free Levee lunch parking begins in Sept.
Jockeys want fees paid for ad patch lawsuits
New Spanish classes help officers relate
State holds hearing on overtime rules
Tobacco buyout forum's focus
Suspect in killing hunting a skunk
Jobless rate declines, but manufacturing weak
Ky. election fraud trial starts
Worker hit in head by 400-pound weight

EDUCATION
Cuts force students to find rides or walk
Charter schools suit reinstated
Lakota support staff gets 35-cent-an-hour raise

NEIGHBORS
Medical expansion starts
A Fest for Tobacco?
W. Chester OKs $1.4M ballfields complex
Butler Co. tries to embarrass its child-support scofflaws
Loveland eases gun law
Nader campaign set back
Warren auditor guilty of DUI

GOOD THINGS HAPPENING
Hawaiian ride helps with AIDS

LIVES REMEMBERED
N.M. Hodapp, district manager
Nellie Smith never let child go hungry