As anyone that works in the nonprofit industry will agree, planning and executing a fundraising event like the Strawberry Festival, can be very challenging. Recruiting sponsors, volunteers and vendors along with all the minute details is a yearlong undertaking. Luckily I am blessed with a talented staff that is willing to go outside of their “job description” in order to make the Strawberry Festival something this community can be proud of.
One thing we cannot control is weather, which can make or break an event. Last year’s festival saw clear blue skies while this year we were graced with clouds, a poor forecast and eventually rain which shut the show down an hour early. Last year had seasonal temperatures in the 80’s, this year was unseasonably cold with temperatures dipping into the mid 50’s. Last year saw thousands of festival goers enjoying good food, blue grass music and a festive atmosphere as can only be imagined in a Rockwell painting. The 2013 Strawberry Festival saw the exact same thing.
As an organization, we have no choice but to accept the weather as is comes and do our best to make lemonade out of lemons. As festival goers, the community has no such obligation. But this community did. As I looked out over the grounds of Slater Hall, I was amazed to see thousands people enjoying hot dogs, BBQ, strawberry shortcake and even snow cones. Everywhere I looked, people dressed in raincoats, jeans and even winter hats were enjoying the craft vendors and listening to music. The grounds were essentially flooded in lemonade!
On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff of Foothills Family Resources, please accept my gratitude for believing that good weather is not a prerequisite for fun at the Strawberry Festival. For understanding that a sausage dog goes just as well with hot coffee as it does with sweet tea. Finally, for accepting that good family fun sometimes means dancing in rain….
The staff at Foothills Family Resources and Blue Wall Group have already started to plan a bigger and better Strawberry Festival for 2014 and we promise a good time, rain or shine. Look forward to seeing you there!