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Church to host festival

Congregation keeps fun going with fall event

By Teresa Moore/The Ironton Tribune

COAL GROVE — It’s become a tradition.

Again this year, Memorial United Methodist Church in Coal Grove will have its Community Fall Festival. The event will be noon to 4 p.m. Saturday on the church lawn at 225 Memorial St.

The event will feature a pig roast, cake and pie contest, live entertainment and a plethora of games.

“Everything is free,” said the Rev. Steve Judson, pastor of the church. “We put out a donation box by the food but that’s it. We’ve rented a jump house for the kids, we have the dunk tank again. This is not about money, this is to give the community an opportunity to have fun and some food and entertainment. It’s an opportunity for families to have a good time in a safe environment for kids.”

How does one church organize such an event? With a lot of willing volunteers.

“I guess it probably takes 30 people, including everyone doing anything in any sort of way,” Judson said.

He estimated that a couple hundred people would visit the festival.

Three music groups will perform during the event. The church’s praise team will take the stage at 12 noon, followed by Wally Christian, a country gospel singer, at 1 p.m. and the contemporary band “Alloyed” at 2 p.m.

The cake and pie baking contest always creates a little competition among the church’s cooks, to see who can serve the best culinary delight, church secretary Carol Gool said.

There will also be a health fair, soup beans and corn bread and desserts.

What does Gool like best about the festival?

“Probably getting acquainted with strangers and seeing the church reach out to members of the community,” she said. “And I love watching the watermelon eating contest. That’s always hilarious.”

What does Judson most like about the festival?

“Sitting back and watching people have fun,” he said. “My favorite part as a pastor is watching people in the community come and enjoy themselves. Food is always a big hit, and I enjoy the entertainment and games but as a pastor my favorite part is watching people have fun. That bring the most satisfaction.”