By Terry Duffy
The annual Youngstown Arts and Music Festival returns for a fourth year from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, in Falkner Park.
Presented by the Youngstown Business and Professional Association, in cooperation with the Village of Youngstown and local businesses, the fest promises a day of fall fun for visitors of all ages.
Included will be daylong music, a host of artisans and vendors, a farmers market highlighting local produce, plentiful wine and spirits tastings and a beer tent.
"We will have many talented musicians, artisans, food from local businesses and more," said organizer Cheryl Irish Butera, president of YBPA, who is coordinating this affair with Katherine Stella of the Mug and Musket, Claudia Andres and others.
Butera said a host of all-new participants will feature wineries from the Niagara Wine Trail, including Niagara Craft Spirits, Black Willow, Honeymoon Trail, the Leonard Oaks Estate Winery and Midnight Run.
Also on site will be the Woodcock Brothers of Newfane and the Niagara Craft District of Lewiston who will join up to 30 craft beer makers anticipated for a daylong homebrew beer contest with cash prizes awarded.
Entertainment-wise, visitors can look forward to a number of participants of various genres, including local musicians Limerick; Tom Callahan; the band Cairde; the McCarthy School of Irish Dance; Teal's Niagara Theatre & Music Production; the Resonance Local Ensemble; musician Dave Stayner; and Pat Stack's band, The Castaways, who entertained at the St. Patrick's Day festivities last March at Somewhere.
Joining them will be a number of artisans and vendors who will be setting up shop around Falkner Park.
Food-wise, look for servings of Kathy Pasquantino of the Village Diner's "kickin chicken chowder," Stack of Somewhere's "edible meatballs," the Youngstown Lions with servings of popcorn, fare from the Mug and Musket and the 700 Bistro in Lewiston, plus local eateries the Ontario House (The Jug) and Main Street Pizza, which will be open throughout the festival.
"We're calling it a little 'Taste of Youngstown,' but it's a flavor of what we can do," Butera said of the festival's multiple offerings. "We will never be Lewiston or Buffalo, but we are proud to showcase what we have to offer. We pride ourselves on 'keeping it local,' "
She welcomes visitors from throughout the region to make the trek up to Youngstown to experience the many festival offerings and enjoy fall in the village.
For more information on the festival, visit the YBPA on Facebook.