Vol­un­teers sought for Fall Fes­ti­val

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - By Paul Kirby pkirby@free­manon­line.com paulat­free­man on Twit­ter

Or­ga­niz­ers of the an­nual Fall Fes­ti­val, the largest fundrais­ing ben­e­fit of the year for the Forsyth Na­ture Cen­ter, are seek­ing vol­un­teers to help out on the day of the event.

The fes­ti­val will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 9 at the Lu­cas Av­enue site. Ad­mis­sion is free.

“We are ask­ing that peo­ple or groups that are will­ing to vol­un­teer ... ei­ther the full day or a morn­ing or af­ter­noon shift,” Mark DeDea, the cen­ter’s care­taker, said in a press re­lease.

The morn­ing shift is 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The later shift is 12:30 to 4 p.m.

Girl Scout and Boy Scout troops, busi­nesses, com­mu­nity or­ga­ni­za­tions and stu­dents in need of com­mu­nity ser­vice hours have been “ex­tremely help­ful over the years,” DeDea said.

“The Fall Fes­ti­val would not be able to hap­pen with­out the help and sup­port of the com­mu­nity,” DeDea said.

“We have been very for­tu­nate over the past 14 years to have so many great vol­un­teers, many of whom have con­tin­ued to come back year af­ter year.”

Or­ga­niz­ers are also seek­ing vol­un­teers for the day be­fore the event to help set up.

DeDea said it takes about 125 vol­un­teers to run the fes­ti­val and be op­er­ate all the games, craft booths, bake sale, face paint­ing, hayride, bounce houses, an­i­mal ex­hibits and en­ter­tain­ment.

The af­ter­noon slots tend to be the most dif­fi­cult to fill, DeDea said. Vol­un­teers who com­mit to a shift will re­ceive a Forsyth Na­ture Cen­ter T-shirt.

The Fall Fes­ti­val started in 2002 with just a cou­ple of craft tables and ven­dors and has grown into a full­day event that en­com­passes the en­tire park, DeDea said.

He said the event at­tracts thou­sands of vis­i­tors each year, and that it has raised $100,000 since its in­cep­tion.

Money raised by the event has been used for such im­prove­ments to the na­ture cen­ter as new per­me­able pavers, build­ings for an­i­mals, ex­hibits, sig­nage, roofs, an au­dio tour and fenc­ing.

The fes­ti­val is co-spon­sored by the city’s Parks and Re­cre­ation De­part­ment and the sup­port group Friends of Forsyth Na­ture Cen­ter.

If your in­ter­ested in vol­un­teer­ing, email info@ forsyth­na­ture­cen­ter.org or call (845) 339-3053. In­clude your name and your re­quested shift.


Lu­cas Dip­pel, 8, son of Shan­non and David Dip­pel of Sauger­ties, feeds a goat Wednes­day at the Forsyth Na­ture Cen­ter in Kingston. Lu­cas was at the na­ture cen­ter with his grand­mother and brother.

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