Expanded Mum Festival has musical theme

The Mum Festival has been a tradition in Tipp City for more than 60 years with the Saturday morning parade one of its most popular events. This year’s festival Sept. 27-29 will have the theme Mumstock ‘19. CONTRIBUTED

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The Mum Festival has been a tradition in Tipp City for more than 60 years with the Saturday morning parade one of its most popular events. This year’s festival Sept. 27-29 will have the theme Mumstock ‘19. CONTRIBUTED

Mary Thomas combined a love of music with history in coming up with the 2019 Tipp City Mum Festival theme – “Mumstock ’19: Music Soothes the Soul.”

The 61stannual version of the fall festival comes to town Sept. 27, 28 and 29 with activities downtown Sept. 27 and at the City Park on Sept. 28 and 29.

"It just seemed to fit for me. My entire family loves music. It is my go-to," said Thomas, who coupled that love with the 50thanniversary of Woodstock to create the theme.

Music also is key for her selection of the Tippecanoe High School band as parade grand marshal. “I needed someone to represent music. Who better than the high school band?” she said.

Among festival events are a car show downtown Sept. 27, the parade at 10 a.m. Sept. 28 and festival entertainment, food and other vendors Sept. 28 and 29 at City Park.

Returning for the 41st year is the Run for the Mums to be held the morning of Sept. 28. Kathy Taylor of Tipp Monroe Community Services has been involved with the run since its beginning.

The race started as a 10K and was introduced to the festival to add an event. The race went that distance for years until attendance started to drop as 5Ks became more popular, Taylor said.

As 10Ks have again grown in popularity, there is talk of adding a 10K to the 5K, but logistics would need to be figured out first.

Participation the past few years has been 300 to 375 walkers and runners. The biggest race drew close to 600 participants.

“We get a lot of Tipp City people who run,” Taylor said. The race now is held on Saturday mornings starting at the City Park, followed by the festival parade and then activities at the park.

Proceeds from the Run for the Mums benefit Community Services’ programs for children and equipment.

This year’s festival will feature the largest number of vendors at City Park at more than 260.

The site was expanded into the north end of the park to accommodate 15 additional spaces, said Sheryl Bechtol, who co-chairs the vendors committee with Michelle Cook.

“We feel like the vendors make the festival. We check on them. We work the park the entire weekend and try to accommodate their reasonable requests,” Bechtol said

An array of items will be available for sale, from T-shirts to soaps, jewelry, organic dog treats, woodworking and flower arrangements.

There has been a move away from merchants and commercial booths to more arts and crafts. “There are a whole host of new things we haven’t seen. We have a lot of favorites coming back as well,” Bechtol said. “There is something for everybody.”

Thomas said the festival overall will again welcome a lot of traditional activities, along with some newer ones including the diaper derby – in its second year – held in the middle of the Little Miss and Mr. Mum event Sept. 28 in the afternoon.

Entertainment will be held both days at the park including Shadow Life in concert Sept. 28 at 7 p.m.

This year’s Mum Festival Queen is Lindsey Westgerdes of Versailles and a student at the Miami Valley Career Technology Center. She was selected from nine contestants during the annual Queen’s Pageant in early September.

For more information on the festival and activities visit www.tippcitymumfestival.org.

Contact this contributing writer at nancykburr@aol.com

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