July 24, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Rain but still shine for summer celebration

Ashley Drexler, 8, of Brunswick, and Brittany Scherban, 12, of Hinckley Township, enjoy the Shock Drop ride at the Brunswick Summer Celebration on Sunday. (PHOTO BY KIERA MANION-FISCHER)

Brunswick’s renamed and rescheduled six-day Summer Celebration festival is being called a success despite a drop in attendance due to rain.

“It’s been slow overall,” said Caryn Kish, festival administrative assistant. She said forecasts of rain over several days was the reason few people showed up compared to last year.

She said Saturday, which usually is the festival’s biggest night, was more sparsely attended than usual, though she didn’t have exact figures.

This year’s festival was new in several ways.

The festival was moved from June to July and an extra day was added.

It also was renamed the “Brunswick Summer Celebration,” after organizers felt its name for the past 32 years, “Brunswick Old Fashioned Days,” had become, well, old fashioned.

“The biggest thing we felt was that the name didn’t fit it,” she said.

A firefighter high-fives children during the Brunswick Summer Celebration parade Sunday along Center Road. (PHOTO BY KIERA MANION-FISCHER)

When the festival began in the early 1980s, people dressed up in period costumes, she said. But that tradition ended years ago.

“I didn’t have to explain to anyone this year what was old-fashioned about it,” she said. “We’ve gotten more business support than we’ve had in previous years,” she said.

The festival was similar to past years, in that it featured the same ride company, festival food and carnival games, along with the city parade along Center Road.

New this year was a beer grotto on a neighboring property because alcohol sales are not allowed on the Brunswick High School grounds, where the festival was held.

Kish said festivalgoers are getting used to the new name.

When asked how the public was reacting to the change, she said, “They’re getting better with it. People don’t like change.”

One person who felt that way was Hope Scherban, 17, of Hinckley, who graduated this year from Brunswick High School. Although she said she enjoyed bringing her younger sister to the festival each year, she wasn’t happy with the new name.

“I don’t like it,” she said. “It’s not the same.”

Lisa Drexler, a Brunswick resident who brought her 8-year-old daughter to the festival Sunday, said she was happy with the changes.

“I think the timing works better,” she said. “It gives us something to look forward to.”

Contact reporter Kiera Manion-Fischer at (330) 721-4049 or kfischer@medina-gazette.com.