The popular ChesterFest event is back Saturday, Sept. 28.
The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the Chester Village Green and surrounding streets.
“This year’s music will be done different from years past,” organizer Elliott Fausz said. “We won’t have any large acts on the main stage. Instead, we will have several small/solo acts scattered around the festival. Think street performers on the corner playing the sax or bagpipes or one-man show.”
The dog show will start on the green’s main stage at 10 a.m. Categories include: best in show, best large, best small, best costume and best trick. The show is hosted by West Chester Pet Resort, and pre-registration can be done at the resort, 12021 Iron Bridge Road.
At 11 a.m., the Thomas Dale High School Marching Knights will perform, followed by the first ChesterFest Teen Idol, which will be held from 12 to 4 p.m.
The KidZone will have several bounce houses, tug o’ war, face painting, yard games from cornhole to giant Jenga and Connect 4.
“Last year, we added some educational activities with the musical petting zoo,” Fausz said. “This year we will add to it with the history exhibit and reptile exhibit.”
Over 180 vendors are slated for the 18th annual event.
Centre Street near Chester Village Green and Chester Village Drive will be closed from midnight until 6 p.m. Saturday. Vendors can park at the Festival Park Plaza lots near the railroad tracks.
The festival started in 2001 as a “big picnic” with 10 to 15 vendors and a fire truck, said Fausz, whose father, Mark Fausz, was instrumental in getting the event going. A number of others were involved too, along with the Chester Community Association.
“It’s impossible to manage ChesterFest with only about a dozen of the Chester Community Association’s volunteers, as they say, ‘it takes a village,’” Elliott Fausz said. “We could not do this without the Thomas Dale [Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps] cadets who do all the heavy lifting and the numerous other Thomas Dale groups and clubs that will be running the KidZone.”
Thomas Dale High School will offer public parking, and four shuttles will run every 5-10 minutes. Chester Baptist Church will also offer a shuttle for the public.
“This is [the association’s] only fundraiser,” Elliott Fausz said of ChesterFest, noting that monies raised will support various projects, including Goyne Dog Park (behind Ecoff Elementary School), scholarships, beautification and infrastructure.