By Demi Knight
Southern Alberta Newspapers
Community celebrations commence this September with another rendition of Stirling’s fall festival.
The 10th annual event is back on Saturday, Sept. 10 with more food, activities and festivities for the community to enjoy.
Mandy Nilsson, chairperson of the festival, says this is popular event to bring the community together and showcase the village’s wonderful spirit.
“This festival is great because I think it brings everybody together and helps foster that community spirit that’s so apparent in Stirling,”
This year the main events will be held throughout the day at three locations, including the Stirling Cemetery, Michelsen Farmstead and the Reunion Centre. With hopes to unite and celebrate the village and all of its population, the day is home to a number of community-minded activities.
The festival this year will kick off bright and early with a project to help beautify the community. Between 9 a.m. and noon, members of the public are welcome to come out to the cemetery and help work on a variety of activities from headstone maintenance, to clean up and more to help keep the cemetery a beautiful part of the village.
The day will then follow into a community fundraiser barbecue hosted by the fire department where hamburgers, chips and pop selections will be available for $6, and a hot-dog combo for $5.
Michelsen Farmstead are also a part of the day’s event as they open their doors to the public between the hours of 2-3:30 p.m. to come and enjoy free tours of the facility, with craft making stations available for children and free snacks for the public to enjoy during their time there.
Nilssen says the excitement for these events is always apparent with the guests, and then she even expressed her own love for the family-friendly activities that the farm provides each year.
“This is second year I’ve been involved with the fair and I actually really love the historical stuff that goes on at Homestead farms. The tours and crafts and different activities — it’s so family friendly.”
At the Reunion Centre it’s also all about the children until 5 p.m. as an obstacle course challenge and bouncy castles are set up for the younger populations to bounce away, race and enjoy.
A free dinner, provided by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is being held following the children’s activities at the centre for everyone to come out and indulge in before the night winds down with two movies in the park. This year’s showings will feature The Jungle Book and the Huntsman: Winter’s War.
However, there is also a new event being added to this year’s agenda, says Nilssen.
“This year we’re adding an event which is called nine-square in the air. We’ll have two games going between dinner and the movie at night.”
Each year community members come out by the hundreds to take in all the fair has to offer, from activities, food and refreshments to educational moments.
“We usually have around 350 to 400 people in attendance each year, and it’s completely free to attend all the events and activities going on throughout the day,” says Nilssen. “It’s a great community and family-friendly event, because there really is something for everyone, from kids to teenagers and adults.”