SunFest brings the party back to Rising Sun on Saturday
— With more than 112 vendors and the power of social media, SunFest is promising to be huge this year, according to the organizer of Saturday’s annual chamber of commerce event.
“We probably only have eight spaces available in the extension area,” Vincent Sammons said. “We have a lot of new vendors.”
Sammons said virtually every home-based business brand will be represented, along with local business, crafters, churches, clubs and organizations. Moving the registration to an online-only format means some long-
time participants may not be in their usual space, he said.
“It was first-come, firstserved. Older vendors that waited until the last minute not thinking we’d be full were surprised,” Sammons said Tuesday.
This is the 27th year of the popular street festival, which originated with the idea of attracting shoppers to downtown businesses.
SunFest begins at 9 a.m. Saturday with a parade along East Main Street. Sammons expects a lot of last-minute drop-ins for the parade, which will line up along Colonial Way for the procession.
While East Main will be closed for the parade, it will not remain closed all day, Sammons said. With Howard Bank making its Pearl Street parking lot available for up to 53 vendors, the need to close the main thoroughfare is gone.
“That is unless the Community Fire Company of Rising Sun wants to bring out its fire engines,” Sammons said.
Sammons said entertainment this year will include impersonators of Elvis, Buddy Holly and Patsy Cline. Street Lamp Productions will offer a performance as well as a demonstration from Rising Sun Martial Arts.
New this year is the pieeating contest and a tugof-war, pitting members of the chamber against town officials. Pie-eating kids will have to plow through a small pie, while the adults will snarf down a whole, fullsized pie to win.
Shuttle service from Rising Sun Middle School and the Rising Sun Towne Center parking lot will be available, dropping off in the center square.
As the street festival draws to a close at 4 p.m., the Base Ball Club of Rising Sun will begin a game against The Chesapeake Nine at the middle school. The club plays by the rules and in the uniforms of the game as it was played in 1864.
“It first came to Rising Sun in 1866, said Greg Rodenbaugh, founder of the team. “It was one of the first in the region to have a team.”
In fact, Rodenbaugh said several streets in town are named for those early team members.
“This is the 150th anniversary of the establishment of baseball in Rising Sun. Names like Wilson and Smith, gentlemen of the town that played on the baseball team,” he added.
Rodenbaugh said the club is constantly in search of new players 18 and older. The game is played without gloves, in heavy flannel uniforms and with different rules about the baselines, foul balls and other matters.
Admission to the game is free.
The Base Ball Club of Rising Sun, celebrating 150 years of baseball in the town, will take on the Chesapeake Nine at 4 p.m. Saturday at Rising Sun Middle School to cap off SunFest.
SunFest, the annual street fair in the center of Rising Sun, returns Saturday with a parade at 9 a.m. The day ends with a vintage baseball game at Rising Sun Middle School beginning at 4 p.m.