(Wyoming County Free Press file photos by Julia Ferrini.)
In the words of narrator Oscar Goldman from the 1970s series “The Six Million Dollar Man”: Steve Austin, astronaut. A man barely alive. Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world’s first bionic man...Better than he was before. Better, stronger, faster.
So the Warsaw Fireman’s Carnival isn’t exactly a man, or a person for that matter, but the fire department didn’t let the setback of last year’s festivities impact this year’s. They forged ahead, used technology, and secured a vendor to host the carnival rides for the annual celebration in an effort to make the event “more like it was in years past” – better, stronger, faster.
The carnival runs from Friday through Monday at the Warsaw Village Park. The festivities begin Friday night at the beer tent with a live band. Depending on the weather and crowds, rides could also start Friday.
Too late in the season last year, the vendor used in previous celebrations by the Warsaw Fire Department cancelled their booking for the 2015 annual event. With such short notice, the department’s carnival committee was unable to secure another vendor for the festivities – a huge blow to the department's budget.
“The carnival is the largest fundraiser we have all year,” said carnival chairman and First Assistant Fire Chief Adam Richter. “It offsets expenses that are not part of the village budget.”
This year, the 60-year tradition continues with the midway provided by American Amusement Rental. Like in years past, there will be rides for all ages, games, food, and live entertainment in the beer tent.
“We secured this vendor a year ago,” Richter said. “There is a lot of effort and a lot of man hours put into getting this event together. We want to build it up stronger than last year and make adjustments from last year.”
This year’s games also include “Darto” – “just like Bingo but different.”
“You use corn instead of the marker and each ticket gets a prize. However, the prize must be picked up the same day the game is won.”
While the game’s origins is somewhat hazy, an antiquated game board was recently found – origins unknown – and there are holes in the board similar to what one would find in a dart board.
“We aren’t exactly sure how or when the game started or even if we play it the same way it was played from the beginning! But it is a lot of fun.”
In addition to the midway and games, the carnival will also feature:
• Grounds opening at noon daily, with rides until 9 p.m.;
• Tickets for the rides are: $1 for one, $10 for 12, $20 for 26, and $15 for unlimited rides from 1 to 5 p.m.;
• Live music at the beer tent performed by The Trolls (Saturday), and 7 Days (Sunday) 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. July 1 through July 3, and Scott's Rockin' (Monday) from 8 p.m. to midnight July 4;
• A chicken barbecue at the American Legion Hall, on park grounds, will be held from 3 p.m. until sold out July 3. Cost is $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 years old and younger. Meals can be picked up or eaten there;
• The parade starts at 7 p.m. July 3 beginning at Court Street and ending at the park; and
• Fireworks at 10:30 p.m. July 4.
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