The Sun and Fun! festival on Saturday August 20 at Second Congregational Church, was a day to celebrate the environment and local community. It featured live music, kids’ activities, and over 25 different community and environmentally friendly groups, including an eclectic mix of groups who meet regularly at the church – from beekeepers to quilters. Live and lively music was provided by The Hale Mountain Pickers. Lunch was prepared by a local professional chef and her team, all from the congregation.
Kids’ activities included face painting, giant-bubble making, and parachute games. Kids and adult together held the edges of the colorful parachute and walked in a circle to the beat of a drum, stopping when the drum stopped, to dive under the parachute for candies. The Battenkill Conservancy brought tubs of river water with live fish and crustaceans for kids to watch and even scoop up temporarily with small nets. Kids and their parents painted several large murals.
At 11 am the Adult Story Telling Hour- much like NPR’s “The Moth Story Hour” – featured stories of a boy’s awakening to the beauty of Nature, a child making friends with a large toad, a young man’s arriving in Cambridge only to discover his girlfriend lived in Cambridge in another state, the rescue of a wild bird whose foot was trapped in ice, and a couple waiting for rescue on a remote river in northern Alaska.
At noon a demonstration on how to build your own backyard compost system was taught by a Master Composter, using kitchen food scraps (no meat or dairy) brought by people attending. At 1 pm, at the Solar Forum, panel members discussed solar feasibility, set-up, financing and more.
The first Sun and Fun festival in August 2015 started as a celebration of solar panels installed on the church roof, but planning quickly expanded to include environmental groups and the various groups that meet at Second Congo. Kids played under the solar shower, made S’mores with a solar oven, made huge bubbles and got to dance to native American drumming.
Sun and Fun was not a fundraiser but to have a good time connecting with others in the local community. Admission was free and the great-value lunches priced just to cover the cost of ingredients. The first 100 visitors received a Sun and Fun red and black re-usable shopping bag, and there were drawings every half hour for prizes, culminating with two grand prizes at the end of the day.
The festival was one of many ways that folks of Second Congo reach out to the local community, in a range of activities, all year round. They hold that everyone is welcome to activities at the church, wherever that person is on life’s journey and whether or not that person is religious.
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