Photo Gallery | Hi-Jinx Night in Adams
ADAMS — It's the aromas that create a festival atmosphere; the warm, buttery smell of fresh popcorn, the spicy whiffs of mustard-slathered hot dogs and sometimes, the steamy scent rising from hot, rain-soaked pavement. Park Street boasted all of that plus games, vendors, performances, and more at Monday's Hi-Jinx Night.
Games provided some "golden moments" for Tanya and Michael Canavan's family: all four of their children won a goldfish at a ping-pong ball toss game. The family carried their swimming prizes in small containers as they made their way toward their vehicle.
"We're going to the store to buy fish bowls," said Tanya Canavan.
Her twin children David and Cellie, 9, said they were excited to win the fish.
"I didn't think i would get it on the first try but I kept at it and I did it," Cellie said.
Her brother Aidan, 7, named his fish.
"His name is Daddy, Jr.," Aidan said.
Two-year-old Rylee won her fish through her own efforts, said Michael Canavan. Rylee opted against making a comment but settled herself on the warm sidewalk and attempted to play with her fish.
This year's fair was organized by Izzy's Diner and Pizza owner AnnMarie Belmonte.
The street was closed at 5 p.m. so that vendors could set up temporary shops under tents and tarpaulins. The Adams Alert Hose Co. raised the American flag on a ladder truck and food trucks began preparing the fair far that hundreds would enjoy throughout the three-hour event. Those hosting games set up their activities along the street. Almost on cue, as the clock rolled to a 6 p.m. fair kick-off, a light but persistent rain began. Fair attendees popped open colorful umbrellas or sought temporary shelter under shop doorways and most continued making their way up and down the street. By about 7:30, the street was filled from end to end with people visiting, playing games, or making purchases from various merchants.
Williamstown resident Lisa Stant said that she'd always wanted to come to the fair but hadn't made it until now.
"I'm usually out at Camp Ashmere at this time," she said. "This year I'm not and I wanted to come and see what it's all about."
Just a few feet from Stant's dry haven under an awning applause was rising as dancers from the town-based Dancecapade dance studio performed. Further up the street, Charlene Candiloro amazed spectators with her hula-hoop skills. Children and adults were welcome to join in and showcase their "hooping" talents.
Candiloro operates Serenity Circles and offers classes at local venues such as Cutting Edge Fitness, she said.
"i like events like these," she said. "I've been doing things like this for two or three years now. It's nice to see a lot of people out and stuff like this keeps kids out of trouble."
Working with hula hoops is a wonderful fitness strategy, she said, and noted that someone working a full hula-hoop dance mode could burn over 500 calories an hour. Simply keeping a hoop swirling about the waist strengthens the core muscles and may burn up to 230 calories per half-hour, she said.
A corn hole game benefitting the Adams Ambulance Service was the second choice of a fund raiser for the group, emergency medical technician Erica Bulshey said.
"We have the corn hole because we couldn't get a dunk tank," she said.
Getting into the spirit of the event was town police Officer Gregory Onorato, who drew cheers when he played a bit of the game.
Boy Scout Troop 38 Associate Advisor Emily Shoestock was overseeing a "Catch A Duck" children's game involving a small wading pool and plastic ducks.
"We love the town of Adams," she said. "This community has always been supportive of us and we'd like to get more kids into scouting."
Among the vendors was town resident Donald Raymond, a locally well-known handmade jewelry artisan, North Adams residents Daniel and Sharon Bergeron and products from their business, Gray Raven Farm, and "Fit to be Dyed" business owner Heather Austin, who said that she recently moved to town
"I was looking for an opportunity to showcase my work to people in town," Austin said. "This seemed like a great way to get my things out there and meet people."
Brandon Sinopoli, 7, had not yet won a goldfish when interviewed but said he might try again.
"I like community events," he said and added that he helped with last week's clean-up at Russell Field.
Kayla Rowett of North Adams attended the fair with her partner Joshua Wimpenney and her two-year-old son Jaxan.
"I see that there are a lot of people here this year," she said. "That's really good.'
Young Jaxan who summed up the crowd's mood in two words.
After initially declining to be interviewed, once good-byes were spoken, Jaxan turned, threw two fingers into the air and loudly said "Peace out!"