CACCC hosts festivals for books and art
BY KAYLA PONGRAC
Our Town Correspondent
This fall, Community Arts Center of Cambria County will host two festivals on their grounds at 1217 Menoher Boulevard in Westmont.
Rosie’s Bookapalooza will be celebrating its inaugural year, and ARToberfest is now in its third year. Both one-day-only festivals are free and open to the public.
Bookapalooza is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 5. Local authors and book vendors will be participating, and workshops and readings are to fill up the day’s itinerary.
Rosie’s Bookapalooza is named after Rose Mary Hagadus, CACCC’s long-time former executive director. She served in this capacity for 33 years before her retirement, and was instrumental in establishing the non-profit organization’s annual book sale.
“Rosie and her late husband, Arthur, were in the book business,” said Angela Godin, CACCC executive director, “so, books were a very big part of their lives. This festival pays tribute to Rosemary’s love of books and of the written word, as she earned a journalism degree and made our annual book sale a huge success.”
Godin said the ultimate goal is for Bookapalooza to be combined with the annual book sale come next year, which means that it will be one large event that “mixes the old with the new.”
Godin and her staff invite parents to bring their children to the festival, as there will be a make-your-own children’s coloring book station.
She emphasized how exciting it is to host an event that “honors writers and authors as artists.”
Later in October, Godin and her staff will welcome people back to their grounds for ARToberfest, which is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 26. Designed to appeal to families, this festival features a free Kids Korner that includes access to free arts and crafts, musical entertainment, meet-and-greets with costumed characters and pumpkin-related activities such as painting, carving and bowling. Two clowns, Razzle and Dazzle, will also be on the grounds from 2 to 4 p.m. offering face painting and balloon animals in exchange for a nominal donation.
Representatives from Best of Friends, a therapeutic horseback riding program based in Johnstown, will offer horse and pony rides to children free of charge thanks to a generous donation from the Otero family, Godin said.
Godin said that what makes this festival so special is how it caters to families in an affordable way.
“So many generous sponsors have stepped up to help support this festival,” Godin said, “and it allows so many activities to be offered free of charge. The fact that we’re able to do that for the community is amazing.”
Food vendors will be on the grounds, as will musicians Sam Coco (noon to 2 p.m.) and Bam ‘N Dakota (2 to 4 p.m.).
All attendees are welcome to come dressed in their Halloween costumes.
Though admission is free to the festival, there is a fee to attend the workshops that will be available to festival-goers that weekend. Workshops include How to Create Your Own Scarecrow, Preschool Pumpkin Fun, YoGhoul Yoga and Hard Cider Class, Mosaic Jar ARTY pARTy and Stacked Pumpkins ARTY pARTy. Many of these workshops require advance registration. For more information or to pre-register, call a CACCC staff member at 814-255-6515 by Oct. 21.
“This festival is a really positive experience for people,” Godin said, “and it’s another way that our arts center focuses on fostering a relationship with the community as a way of staying true to our name.”