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Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 8, 2023

Music festival to boost accessible parks project

The Summer Solstice Music and Arts Festival kicks off Saturday morning and organizers say proceeds from the event will go toward funding an accessible park project in Ironton.

Amanda Cleary, co-founder of the group, said that the event will raise funds for Third and Center’s Parks for All program, an ongoing effort to bring handicapped-accessible playground equipment to parks in the city.

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This is the second year for the event, which will kick off at 9 a.m. with an instructional youth fishing event.

Viviane Khounlavong will lead community yoga at noon at the Summer Solstice Music and Arts festival on Saturday. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

Cleary said this activity will be free and is open to those 12 and under, accompanied by an adult. She said the group will provide extra equipment and bait for the instruction.

At noon, there will be community-led yoga by Khounlavong. She will be doing double duty at the event, with her food truck, Yommaste, which specializes in southeast Asian food and healthy options.

Other food vendors at the event include Fat Boy Q, T&C Lemonade, Snow Brothers and Dragonfly Outdoor Café.

Music for the event kicks off at 1 p.m. and runs through 9 p.m. The line-up  features Trigger Trey, Brady Ross and The Route 23 Band, Dale Blankenship and the Elkhounds, the Shelby Lore Band and Hot Brown Smackdown.

Cleary said there will be 25 art and artisan vendors on site, as well as a voter registration booth and those from community organizations like the Briggs Lawrence County Public Library and Ashland Animal Rescue.

Admission to Summer Solstice is $5 for adults and free for children 12 and under, as well as students.

Cleary said the festival is but one of the many things the nonprofit has planned.

On Sept. 23, the Ironton River Run, a 5K along the floodwall route in Ironton will return for its third year.

She said Third and Center is also starting a community youth arts program this fall, the pilot of which will be offered afterschool at Ironton Elementary.

Cleary said this program will launch for kindergarten through fifth grade, then expand through senior year of high school The plan is for it to eventually be offered to adults as well.

Cleary said the program will, after nine weeks, take advantage of facilities at Ohio University Southern, one of their community partners.

For Summer Solstice, Cleary said those seeking more information can visit their website, and that they are still seeking entrants for the talent show, as well as volunteers.