Fireworks to be added to West Lafayette Homecoming festival

| July 25, 2017

WEST LAFAYETTE – Every year, hundreds of people from West Lafayette and surrounding communities come together in Burt Park to enjoy the many fun activities during the West Lafayette Homecoming Festival. But this year’s festival promises to go above and beyond with more rides offered by Albanese Amusement Inc. and the much-anticipated arrival of fireworks.

The cost for the fireworks and insurance is $3,000 and volunteers from Sacred Heart Church will be on hand to set them off into the sky on Saturday, July 29 at 10 p.m. All the money was raised through donations by local citizens and businesses.

“People are awesome” said Oren Griffith, president of the West Lafayette Chamber. “They just give, give, give.”

The fireworks will be set off by the wetlands by the softball fields at the high school. People are encouraged to sit on the visitor’s side of the football stadium bleachers for best viewing of the fireworks.

The fireworks will have a special meaning for Oren this year and his wife Patty. The first red firework that goes off will be dedicated to Allen Huprich, Patty’s late father.

“I know some people might think this is crazy, but when Allen’s mother died, we came out of the care center and there was a red bird,” said Oren. “You didn’t see too many of them back then, now we see them all the time, but back then, there weren’t too many around. Allen died before his mom passed away and we all said that red bird was Allen coming back to say goodbye to his mother. That’s why the first red firework to go off will be dedicated to him. He was a great father-in-law and I miss him a lot.”

Allen and his wife were actually part of the reason Oren and Patty became involved with the chamber. Several years ago, there was fear that the festival may be discontinued altogether, but when Oren and Patty became involved, they brought the festival back to its original time of good fun and socialization with old and new friends.

“I think just people getting together and having fun is one reason it’s lasted so long,” said Patty. “We brought it back to the way it used to be and I think people appreciate that. The community enjoys having this every year.”

Not only has Oren and Patty helped restore the West Lafayette Homecoming to its original glory, but many others in the chamber as well.

“We’ve got a great bunch of people we work with on the chamber,” said Oren.

This year’s festival promises to be another great time spent with family and friends. There will be more than 20 vendors present, more carnival rides than ever before, and lots of delicious food to enjoy including barbecues, kettle corn, fireman’s French fries, and roasted corn on the cob.

Perhaps the most popular and most anticipated event each year is the queen’s contest which will be at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 27 in Burt Park. Conducted by Shanna Weaver, the contest features a queen, junior queen, mini queen, junior miss, little miss, little mister, and senior queen.

Another popular event is the annual homecoming parade, which will be Friday, July 28 at 7 p.m. For those who watch the parade by the band stand, Don and Judy Lusk will be announcing each float as it passes by.

Each year, the chamber tries to use money made during last year’s festival to improve this year’s celebrations. This year will be no different as D&D will be adding down spouts to the eat stand.

“We try to put that money back into the community,” said Patty.

Planning this festival each year is a lot of hard work and chamber members usually begin preparations in November or December. Volunteers such as Dave and Debbie Rogers, Ed and Susan Chapdelaine, Chuck and Shanna Weaver, Steve and Gwen Bordenkircher, and Oren and Patty’s daughter Emily Bradford, among so many others help to make this event a success each year.

“I want to thank everybody, the vendors and the merchants that have donated for us to have entertainment,” said Oren. “Without them, we wouldn’t have any entertainment. We live in a wonderful community. I’m very proud to live here.”

70th West Lafayette Homecoming Festival

Thursday, July 27

5:00 -9:30 p.m.: Eat stand opens; limited menu, Carnival rides open by Albanese Amusement Inc.

6:00 p.m.: Queen contest held in Burt Park, RD promotions as Master of Ceremonies, Precious treasures snack stand

6:00 p.m.: Merchandise drawing ticket sales begin

Friday, July 28

5:00 – 9:30 p.m.: Eat stand opens – full menu

5:00 – 9:00 p.m.: Carnival rides open by Albanese Amusement Inc.

6:00 p.m.: Parade line up begins; contact Ed, 740-545-6696, Corn roast – FFA alumni

7:00 p.m.: 70th annual homecoming festival parade

8:00 p.m.: Mayor’s welcome – Main Stage, Merchandise and 50/50 ticket sales – Headquarters Stand, 2017 queens and visiting queens – Main Stage,                                    Mouse game – Lions Club, Kid’s merchandise bust a balloon in midway

8:30 – 10:30 p.m.: Tyndel Creek Band – Main Stage

10:30 p.m.: Merchandise and 50/50 ticket drawing – Headquarters Stand

Saturday, July 29

8:00 a.m.: Lafayette Pointe 5-k run/walk

8:00-10:00 a.m.: All you can eat pancake breakfast – eat stand

9:00 a.m.: Flip-n-Out Gymnasts – front of bandstand, AMA RC fun fly show – football field

10:00 a.m.: Headquarters stand opens, Miss Jodi’s dancers – front of bandstand, Home run derby by RW Rec – ballfields behind high school

11 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.: Pets got talent – pet parade – Burt park, Coshocton County k-9 unit, Memory lap – Team Alana – Relay for Life, Silent auction – closed at 12:45 p.m.

12:00 p.m.: Storytime – West Lafayette Branch Library – Burt Park

12:30 – 1:00 p.m.: Peddle tractor sign-up – Rotary shelter

1:00 p.m.: Peddle tractor pull by RHS young farmers – Rotary shelter

1:00 p.m.: Carnival rides open by Albanese Amusement Inc.

1:00 – 4:00 p.m.: Wristbands special for rides

4:00 – 6:00 p.m.: Games in park – West Lafayette Nazarene Church – Burt Park

4:00 p.m.: Chicken Dinner – eat stand $8 each

5:00 – 7:00 p.m.: Acoustic Edge – band stand

7:00 – 8:00 p.m.: New Towne Cloggers – front of bandstand

8:00 – 10:00 p.m.: Ryan Michael and the Redneck Romeos Band – bandstand, Boots and Buckles/ Dancin Boots will perform thru evening

10:00 p.m.              ********** Fireworks ********** NE Ohio pyros

Seating available at visitors side of football field

10:30 p.m: Merchandise and 50/50 ticket drawing – headquarters stand

***** Bust a balloon in the midway to get kids merchandise *****

Sponsored by West Lafayette Chamber of Commerce

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Category: Arts & Entertainment

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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