Ironmaster organizers getting into high gear

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 15, 2004

Summer is still more than two months away but event organizers are already hard at work trying to make the 2004 Ironmaster Days one of the best ever.

The festival that was created to honor Ironton's heritage will kick off

June 24-27 this year. In its sixth year overall, the event has continued to grow since the Ironton Business Association resumed hosting the festival three years ago.

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Organizers are finalizing the entertainment and events that include a car show, children's games, tractor show, flea market and a variety of musical entertainment each night.

"The goal of Ironmaster Days is to just provide entertainment and let everyone come enjoy downtown Ironton," said Rich Patrick, IBA vice president. "We hope to eventually return to the riverfront and have an event to rival Ashland's."

So far, a motorcycle and car show is planned for June 27, a children's circus will be offered June 25-27, a flea market will be June 26 and an antique tractor and engine show will anchor activities on June 26. Food vendors will set up along Third Street during the entire event.

Musical entertainment will close out each day's events. Studimo Productions of Ironton have booked all local acts to showcase the talent in this area.

"All these guys have been playing music locally, and some nationally, for several years," said John Griffiths, Studimo president and owner. "They are all seasoned performers who know what they are doing and know how to entertain a crowd."

Classic rock/country artists Kanyon and Legends will perform Thursday. Rhythm and blues band Fat Mac Daddy and classic rock band The Fugitives will play Friday.Saturday's entertainment includes solo guitarist Chris Kitchen and local country singer Lee McCormack as the headliner.

Gospel acts that are yet to be announced will take center stage to close the event Sunday.

Griffiths and other organizers are currently asking local businesses and organizations to contribute to the event.

"What we are trying to do is eventually, by taking baby steps, build this back up to regatta size," he said. "Right now, we don't want to get bigger than we can handle."

For more information, visit the Ironmaster Web site at