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Local high school music boosters raise money with food stands at the fair

| October 7, 2015
Pictured here are volunteers working the Coshocton High School music boosters’ food stand. Pictured left to right are: Tim Ott, Teresa Ott, Roy Graves, and Caroline Heading.

Pictured here are volunteers working the Coshocton High School music boosters’ food stand. Pictured left to right are: Tim Ott, Teresa Ott, Roy Graves, and Caroline Heading.

Pictured here is Charity Lower as she helps out in the kitchen at the Ridgewood High School music boosters’ food stand at the Coshocton County Fair.

Pictured here is Charity Lower as she helps out in the kitchen at the Ridgewood High School music boosters’ food stand at the Coshocton County Fair.

Pictured here is Dee Smith as she works the cash register at the River View School music boosters’ food stand at the Coshocton County Fair.

Pictured here is Dee Smith as she works the cash register at the River View School music boosters’ food stand at the Coshocton County Fair.

COSHOCTON – One aspect of the Coshocton County Fair that everyone looks forward to every year is the food. Whether you love the French Fries or the sugary elephant ears, each person has that one special fair food they crave every year.

With two days left of this year’s fair, if you haven’t supported the local school districts’ music boosters’ food stand, consider supporting them either today or tomorrow. Ridgewood and River View are located along the midway and Coshocton’s is under the grandstand.

“It’s something that the kids look forward to every year,” said Teresa Ott who runs the Coshocton food stand. “The kids have fun and are good hard workers.”

The Coshocton food stand uses its money to purchase anything from new musical instruments to new music for the choir and band. It can also be used to purchase awards for the musicians during the end-of-year awards ceremony or pay for new uniforms. Last year, the money went toward a trip taken by the choir.

The Coshocton food stand has been around for at least 40 years and people always seem to respond well to it each year. They run 21 shifts with three to seven adults working each shift. The music and band students also come out after school to help. They start the grill up at 6:30 a.m. and close at 10 p.m.

The stand serves a variety of food including hamburgers, hot dogs, taco in a bag, chili cheese fries, and their ever-popular Redskin Melt made with sausage and hot pepper cheese.

The River View food stand also has special items on their menu that people seem to enjoy – the Double Bear Burger and the Bear Nuggets.

“We have kids ask if they’re actually made from bears, and of course we play along and say yes,” said Dee Smith, co-director of the food stand.

The River View food stand is located along the midway across from the commercial buildings. The money they raise goes into their general fund which in turn is used for trips, instrument repairs, special uniforms, gas expenses, and also helps run the concession stand at the high school. It also goes toward the junior high and elementary school choirs and bands.

The River View music boosters are also doing another fundraiser at their food stand this year. There is a small jar by the cashier where people can donate money to the scholarship fund for a River View musician. The organization needs to raise at least $2,000 and a foundation in Coshocton will match their funds.

“We have seen a need for it this year,” Smith said. “A lot of people have been very receptive.”

Smith said that volunteers are always needed and wants to reach out especially to the alumni of the River View choir or band for their support.

“If they are willing to come back and work, we would love to have them,” she said. “We still have some alumni who come back after 30 or 40 years because they enjoy supporting the music boosters.”

The River View food stand was started by Warsaw High School prior to consolidation. The stand used to have a sawdust floor, but now has concrete floors and tables where people can sit and enjoy their meal.

“We’re also looking for any old stories or old photos or even old prices that anyone might have,” said Smith. “We’d like to see how prices have gone up or stayed the same over the years.”

The River View stand opened last Thursday so that fair workers could have a place to go and have a nice meal. During the fair, they are open from 10:30 a.m. and close at 10 p.m., depending on the crowd and the weather.

Other co-directors of the River View food stand include Toni Trowridge and Nichole Wheeler.

The Ridgewood food stand has a long history at the Coshocton County Fair as well. It used to be run every year by a variety of Ridgewood clubs, but then converted entirely to the music boosters. The stand is located across from the commercial buildings not far from the River View food stand.

The money raised at the Ridgewood stand also goes into their general fund to be used to help fund the band competition shows and any trips for the band or choir. They also run a teacher’s shift where the money goes toward the Accelerated Reading program.

The stand has seven adults and seven kids working each of the three shifts.

“It’s something the kids look forward to every year,” said Charity Lower, who is in her fourth year of being in charge of the stand. “The kids really enjoy it because they come back and work every year.”

The Ridgewood food stand serves a variety of food including burgers, hot dogs, ham and Swiss sandwiches, shredded chicken, chicken and noodles, and other food favorites. They are open from 10:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.

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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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