What: North Olmsted Homecoming
Where: Community Park, 28114 Lorain Road
Hours: 6-10: p.m., Thursday; 1-11 p.m. Friday; 7:30 a.m.-11:30 p.m. Saturday; 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday.
More information: Midway rides, food trucks, entertainment, special Flags of Honor memorial
Ohio’s Flags of Honor Traveling Memorial is one of the new features of North Olmsted’s popular annual Homecoming celebration, which will also include Midway rides, booths, a 5K Run/Walk sponsored by Fat Heads Brewery, a band concert and a pie-eating contest.
Homecoming — will be held Thursday through Sunday — is again at North Olmsted Community Park, 28114 Lorain Road. Sponsored by volunteer group the North Olmsted Community Council, the festival was started to welcome home soldiers from World War II and has become an annual August event.
The Flags of Honor memorial bears the names of Ohio’s military personnel who have died in Afghanistan, Iraq and in the war on terror since Sept. 11, 2001. A flag-raising ceremony in the park’s memorial plaza will be held at 4:30 p.m. Friday and the flags will remain until the closing ceremony Sunday.
Residents and representatives from community organizations will stand guard with the flags in two-hour shifts throughout the three days they are at the festival.
“It brings together many diverse groups to honor all those who have died serving in the military,” said Tom Herbster, president of the North Olmsted Community Council. “It’s a very moving event for people who see it and participate in it. It’s a good addition to the activities and fits in with the spirit of Homecoming and its desire to bring all the community together during the events.”
Homecoming will also include food, games, music, a car show, the 5K race, an assortment of booths, contests and the parade at 1 p.m. Sunday. The parade will start at North Olmsted High School on Butternut Ridge Road and proceed down Lorain Road to the park.
On Thursday, the North Olmsted School District will be on hand with exhibits and school staff in the main tent to talk about the upcoming school year, which begins next week.
“That always gets a lot of interest from people,” Herbster said. “There are students and families who are currently involved with the schools as well as a lot of alums who are interested in seeing what’s going on in them right now.”
The Taste of North Olmsted is set for 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, but a variety of food will be available throughout the festival, Herbster said.
“We have a lot of different vendors and different food trucks who come and have a lot of tasty food for people to try and experience as part of the fun,” he said. “And we have the Taste of North Olmsted, which brings in a lot of different restaurants from throughout the city and nearby. It’s great advertising for all the food and for the Homecoming itself.”
The festival and midway area will feature at least 65 booths representing various activities in North Olmsted.
“It helps show that there are a lot of diverse groups and things to do in North Olmsted,” Herbster said. “It’s a chance to stop and talk with a lot of people that you often don’t get the chance to see throughout the rest of the year.
A first-aid area will be staffed by the Girl Scouts of America, who are new festival participants.
The fun will begin a bit early Sunday as people set up for the parade in the high school and middle school parking lots, Herbster said.
“It’s a little different with the new schools and the different parking lot setup, but the floats always come out looking great,” Herbster said.
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