New Albany News

Community events board

Annual fall festival, not held this year, needs a home

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The New Albany Community Events Board is searching for a permanent home for the annual fall festival, even though it did not hold the festival this year.

Potential locations include the Plain Township Aquatic Center.

"We're trying to find a good location for the event, where we can have our own permanent home and our own identity," said board member Ron Kendle. "We're going to hopefully have (the festival) next year."

The fall festival has been held the previous four years, usually in Market Square.

Kendle said scheduling events in Market Square has become difficult because so many other events, such as the farmers market, take place there.

"We decided that it wasn't going to work with dates and all the events that are happening downtown," he said.

Kendle said events board members would like to use the Plain Township Aquatic Center off Swickard Woods Boulevard for the fall festival's permanent location.

He spoke in October to the Plain Township trustees about using the facility. Trustee Dave Olmstead asked if the board should partner with the New Albany-Plain Local School District to open the K-1 elementary parking lot for the event.

Kendle said the community events board has partnered with the school district in the past. He said the 2011 festival was held in conjunction with the district's homecoming celebration.

"It was a great turnout (two years ago)," Kendle said. "We held it on a Friday night and introduced all the fall sports teams and the football coaches came out and spoke before the game."

Kendle said he could see that partnership expanding to include a two-day celebration on Friday and Saturday of homecoming weekend.

The board could host live entertainment both days and rent a large-screen television to show college football games on Saturday afternoon. The homecoming parade and football game on Friday would be included to help "increase attendance to that game," he said.

The New Albany Community Events Board was formed in 2004 as a local nonprofit organization to help plan community events. In 2008, the board established New Albany Community Events Inc., which was responsible for planning two annual celebrations in 2012: SpringFest and the Fourth of July celebration.

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