By Ned Campbell
Patrick Costello calls it “the nicest playground in Central New York.”
The first two Sherrill Kenwood Park Festivals raised enough money to fund the $140,000 playground at Robertson Park, which was completed in June 2011.
Since then, festival organizers have turned their attention to another project — building an amphitheatre at the Community Activity Center lawns to be used for local concerts and productions, as well as festivals and movie nights.
“We want to do something else that we think everyone can use,” said Costello, event chairman.
Over the last two years, the festival has raised about $60,000 toward the amphitheatre, which is estimated to cost $140,000 to $150,000.
The fifth annual festival is set for Saturday at the Community Activity Center lawns in Sherrill, and the goal is to raise $25,000. That would be matched by the Sherrill Kenwood Community Chest for a total of $50,000.
The Community Chest pledged to match $125,000 of the festival’s fundraising efforts when the event was started in 2009. Of that, there is about $25,000 left, Costello said.
The festival will be open to all ages and will be kicked off with the Silver Scorcher road race, which includes a 5K and 10K run and a free children’s fun run. More than 250 people took part in last year’s inaugural races, Costello said. Race registration costs $35 and includes admission to the festival and a pancake breakfast.
The event also features a children’s stage, children’s activities and restaurant vendors each offering a $1 sample item.
The main stage will have music by an array of regional bands of varying styles that are new to the festival this year, including Los Blancos, Root Shock and the Jamie Notarthomas Band. The only band to return from last year: The Wheel.
“Every year, the festival has gotten bigger and gotten more bands, and every band wants to come back,” Costello said. “This year, we tried to do an entirely new lineup because … we wanted to give people a taste of some different styles.”
IF YOU GO
Where: Community Activity Center lawns, 139 Hamilton Ave., Sherrill
When: 12:30 to 10:30 p.m. Saturday
Cost: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. For children, $5 in advance or $7 at the door.
Ticket locations: Sherrill City office and Costello Eye Physicians’ offices in Oneida, Rome and New Hartford.
Second annual Silver Scorcher 5K/10K
Where: Starts at Community Activity Center and winds past the Oneida Community Mansion House, the Oneida Community Golf Course and Robertson Park.
When: Registration from 6:45 to 8 a.m. at the CAC. The 5K starts at 8:30 a.m. and the 10K starts at 8:45 a.m., followed by a free children’s fun run at 9 a.m.
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