Patriotically decorated golf carts in the Patriotic Red, White and Blue Golf Cart Parade served as a prelude to Fairport Harbor Village Fest 2022.
In addition to police and firefighters, baton twirlers and local veterans, about 21 or 22 golf carts made their way to Third Street Vine, Vine to Seventh Street and Seventh to Eagle Street September 3. Participants competed for the honor of most patriotic Golf Cart, with prizes awarded for first, second and third place.
“About a year ago, when we didn’t have Mardi Gras, we held a golf cart parade to fill the void,” said Amy Cossick, village administrator. “We had Mardi Gras this year, so we didn’t need the big golf cart parade, but with Village Fest happening on Labor Day weekend, we decided to have one. ”
Some of the golf cart attendees planned to decorate their carts while others decorated closer to the event, Cossick said.
“I put a little sheet in their packets to show them ideas on how to decorate red, white and blue, so that helps stimulate it,” she said. “We are a golf cart friendly community. Many of our people have golf carts, so they are more than happy to participate.
Among the attendees were Ryan and Catherine Wank of Grand River and their children. It was their first year of participation.
“I came and signed up for the kids to have fun,” Ryan said. “We had a great time and are already looking forward to next year.”
Ryan said it took them a few hours to decorate their golf cart.
“It was a family activity that we did together,” Catherine said. “It was fun.”
Participants saw lots of people they knew and their children got to see their friends from school.
“It’s nice to have the community together,” Catherine said.
The event attracts more than 1,000 people each year.
“With good weather, who knows what we might get,” Cossick said. “They’re really enjoying it. This parade is a lot smaller than our Mardi Gras parade. It’s more of a hometown feel and I think they like seeing all the local people in the parade together.
Village Fest, launched in 2019, offers family-friendly entertainment and activities; food; the opportunity to visit the shops and boutiques of downtown Fairport Harbor and the chance to visit the two community museums. The festival is based on the High Street, from Fourth to Second Street; and on Third Street. No admission is charged for the event; and parking is also free.
“We are closing our streets for this event and they (the spectators) love being able to shop, eat, visit the beach and have fun,” Cossick said. “Downtown is a pleasure.”