Food, games, merchandise come to Marion’s Main Street
MARION — Volunteers brought food, games, and merchandise to Main Street in Marion to help fundraise for The First Congregational Church on Saturday, July 27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
This year's annual summer fair featured a food court, carnival-inspired activities for kids, a silent auction, consignment shop, and a wide variety of other goods for sale.
Silent auction tables were set up on the church’s front lawn. Gifts donated by local businesses and individuals were listed with their minimum bid, and bidding increments for those who wanted a chance to take them home. Hotdogs and hamburgers were served from the “sidewalk grill” and a variety of baked goods were available for dessert.
The Chapel Cafe operated out of the church’s basement, and served lobster rolls from Turk’s Seafood, and chicken salad wraps.
Tables lined the sidewalks on Main Street between Front and School streets with books, sporting goods, and nautical gear for sale. Church volunteers offered their time to sell the donated goods.
Children's activities were set up farther away from the church, near School Street. Fair Coordinator and Church President Carl Correia said that the “midway fair” for kids was modeled after old carnivals. It included a bouncy house, putting green, face painting, and traditional carnival games like the “can toss.” Members of Boy Scout Troop 32 and Cub Scout Pack 32 took turns sitting on top of a dunk tank, as other kids threw a ball at a target to plunge them into the water below.
Game winners at the midway were awarded a new form of currency called a “Ducky Buck.” Kids then exchanged their Ducky Bucks for toys in the basement of the Community Center as part of the White Elephant Sale. Ducky Bucks could also be won by selecting a random rubber duck from a plastic bowl. At the bottom of each duck, a number between four and six (and in some cases a math equation with an answer between four and six) listed how many Ducky Bucks the child would receive. Kids under 12 were able to select one rubber duck each free of charge.
The White Elephant Sale had cash options for adults too, ranging from sewing machines to kitchen supplies. With a wide variety of options for community members, she said the sale was more of a social event than a fundraiser.
The Penny Pinchers Exchange consignment shop was in full-swing one floor above the White Elephant Sale. Normal hours for the volunteer-run shop are Wednesday 10 a.m to 4 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. although the shop remained open an hour later than usual to accommodate the fair.
The shop sells miscellaneous items, such as clothes and household goods. Some of the products are donations and others are 50/50 consignments with half of the proceeds going to the church, and half going to the previous owner.