Mt. Airy festival showcases ‘village’ values

Pooches paraded. Faces got painted. Belly dancers shimmied.

The Mt. Airy Village Fair brought a festive air to a sun-blessed afternoon at the intersection of Greene Street and Carpenter Lane on Sunday afternoon.

Meg Hagele, owner of the High Point Café, is one of the organizers of the yearly event.

“This whole idea is a celebration of this community by the businesses on this corner,” she explained. “We said, ‘Let’s just have an old school fair.'”

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Weavers Way Co-op and the Big Blue Marble Bookstore also helped to coordinate the event, which closed down a two-block section of Carpenter Lane for five lively hours.

Over 50 vendors lined the street, offering both traditional and unusual presentations.

Outside of Philadelphia Salvage, a demonstration of hay bale building allowed people to see how structures could be constructed with earthen clay and straw.

Anne Workman, outreach coordinator for Weavers Way Co-op, said event organizers were very picky about which vendors got to take part.

“We want them to have an activity that is interactive and related to their business or service, so everyone can get involved in what they do,” she said.

Crafter Jessica Gorlin Liddell has had a table at the fair for the last three years.

“I teach classes at my studio and I find that this is good advertising,” she said.

In addition to her glass and ceramic wares, Liddell had a separate station up so that attending families could make their own mosaic art:

“People come up, see what I have on the tables and we start chatting. Then, they end up at my classes.”

Highlights of the event included a blueberry pie-eating contest and pet fashion show.

Moving Arts of Mount Airy and Mount Airy Yoga also presented in the main staging area.

Organizers worked hard to highlight the strengths of the neighborhood.

“We wanted more of a village feel,” says event coordinator Maleka Fruen. “We wanted it to really be a destination where people could come to this corner, get a coffee, go to a mom and baby workshop or meditation session. Basically, this fair is to represent all the strengths of this neighborhood.”

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