This weekend, East Mt. Airy Neighbors and West Mt. Airy Neighbors hosted the 44th annual Mt. Airy Day on the Cliveden grounds at 6400 Germantown Ave.
The event included live entertainment from local artists performing on two stages, and a range of activities for all ages, including a moon bounce, face painting, and arts and crafts for children.
East Mt. Airy Neighbors estimates that as many as 3,000 attend the event annually.
This year, roughly 160 vendors participated in the event, providing attendees with low-cost finds for jewelry, clothes, and more, as well as information for local organizations.
Greg Williams, owner of Walk a Crooked Mile bookstore in Mt. Airy said he’s been selling books at Mt. Airy Day for over a decade.
“We’ve probably been coming for this for 10 to 15 years. Coming here is as much about just hanging out with the community and seeing people you haven’t seen forever, than it is about selling,” Williams said.
Williams said the event also afforded him the opportunity to spread the word about a petition the bookstore has going to keep its doors open.
“We’ve been trying to get people to sign a petition to SEPTA to approve the lease. I’ve been jawboning all day. The community is very excited about the possibility that somebody’s going to be able to keep it open.”
Another vendor, Adjoa Frempong said she solely relies on events like Mt. Airy Day to promote her afro-centric jewelry business.
“I’m retired. I’m not on the internet. So, I come out and vend when I can,” she said. “It’s a nice diverse crowd here, and I like the area, and business is good here.”
Attendees like Mt. Airy residents Ricky Castagnola and Jakey Greenberg said the event offered diverse food options, entertainment and reasonably priced items for sale; a feature they felt wasn’t present at events they’d attended in neighboring Chestnut Hill.
“I went there and everything was so expensive. Here was much more affordable,” Castagnola said.
Greenberg said she was pleasantly surprised by the informative vendors that were present at the event.
“There are just a lot of things here that we didn’t know would be here. They had the ADHD tent over there, which was interesting; I didn’t expect that. And there was just lots of good vendors here,” she said.
When asked if they planned to return for the 45th annual Mt. Airy Day next year, Greenberg and Castagnola offered a resounding, “Absolutely yes.”