Bigger and busier than ever, attendees still felt at home during Saturday's Perry Hall/White Marsh Town Fair, said Dennis M. Robinson, Jr., president of the Perry Hall Improvement Association.
"Perry Hall has a small town, community feel. It's wonderful to see the community come together and have a great time," Robinson said.
The Perry Hall/White Marsh Business Association, which coordinated the event, anticipated a record crowd—up to 15,000 people—to visit Honeygo Village Center for music, food, kids activities, community exhibits and numerous family activities.
County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, who delivered a welcome speech to fairgoers, said he was impressed by the fair's enthusiastic showing.
"People were here right at 10," Kamenetz said. "It's great. It's perfect weather. It's a lot of fun."
Vendor space at the fair was entirely sold out, said Lynn Richardson, business association president. Nearly 200 booths invited attendees to grab a balloon, get a temporary tattoo, receive a tarot card reading or even sit for a hair cut. Items for sale ranged from wooden roses and sweet-smelling soaps to duct tape bracelets and bubble shirts.
Down one row, visitors learned about banking options; along another aisle, McGruff the Crime Dog supported the Precinct 8 Police and Community Relations Council; still other areas welcomed fairgoers to gather information about local church functions, health and fitness operations and numerous recreational activities.
Daria Hauff of Perry Hall watched as her smiling 3-year-old daughter Adriana sat behind the steering wheel of a White Marsh Volunteer Fire Company truck. “She really loves that fire truck,” Hauff said. “But she’s also gotten candy and all kinds of stuff from other vendors—and she just had to have some lemonade. It’s been a nice day!”
Alongside the busy beer and wine garden, a highly competitive cornhole tournament was taking place. Participants scored points by tossing a light cornhole bag several yards onto a raised platform with a hole cut in it.
“This location is great,” said Pat Letts, president of Nottingham-based Mid-Atlantic Cornhole. “We’ve had so many people come by to ask what’s going on. They’re just being introduced to the game, and we let them get in a few tosses. Everybody’s had a really good time.”
Proceeds from the fair support many community-based efforts, including scholarships, donations to local school groups and restoration of the Perry Hall Mansion, the business association announced.
Baltimore County Councilman David Marks, one of the many town fair sponsors, was among several politicians who made the rounds to shake hands and listen to citizens’ concerns. “I leave these festivals with a to-do list,” he noted.
Regarding the fair, Marks added, “People are very happy with the location—everybody seems to be enjoying themselves, and it should help the [Honeygo Village Center] merchants as well.”
In spite of the crowds, the fairgrounds largely remained safe and calm, said Lt. Ron Brooks of the White Marsh police precinct.
Police assisted mainly with parking and traffic, Brooks said.