You can’t keep a good fair down. That was the lesson in Secaucus last weekend, June 7, 8, and 9, as rain forced the cancellation of Friday, the first day of the Secaucus Street Fair, but did not stop residents and town neighbors from coming out in droves on Saturday and Sunday.
The third annual event was stymied, but not squelched. And when it finally got its start on Saturday at noon, everyone was ready to have fun.
On Sunday, Liz Riebesell, president of the Secaucus High School Patriot Booster Club, was manning her organization’s table in Plaza Center, and relishing every moment.
“It’s a great thing. The mayor does a great job. There’s something for everyone,” she said. “We’re definitely happy we came, and we’ll definitely be coming back next year.”
Choices, choices, choices were there; in jewelry, crafts, games, activities, and of course, eating options.
“There’s more food here than you can shake a stick at,” Riebesell said.
From Italian to Greek, to Indian, Hawaiian, and Colombian, there was a stand for just about every culinary taste. You could purchase a calzone, gyro, and empanada, and still not sample everything you wanted to. Secaucus delicatessens Giovanni’s and Filomena’s were among the local businesses represented.
“We’re definitely happy we came, and we’ll definitely be coming back next year.” – Liz Riebesell
Children were treated to face painting, rock climbing, craft making, rides, and educational exhibits.
Secaucus Fire Official Vincent Massaro said more than 100 people, mainly children, had gone through the town’s spanking new, $70,000 mobile fire prevention trailer.
“We know there’s going to be a lot of children down here, so it’s a perfect opportunity to show them,” he said.
Obtained through a Federal Emergency Management Agency grant, the unit simulates kitchen and bedroom fires, and educates youth on how to react to them. It also features a room demonstrating how a sprinkler works, as well as a hurricane warning system.
Massaro said that since the unit is interesting to children, it entices them into thinking about fire prevention.
“If you save one life, it’s worth it,” he said.
Kids and eco-fun
Not far from the safety exhibit was a vehicle that combined environmental consciousness with enjoyment. The Fun Art Bus exhibited by YouGottaHaveArt.org is basically a traveling art studio. But even more important than that, the activities held inside teach youth about saving our planet’s resources, according to proprietor Laurie Caspert.
“Kids come on and make art projects with things you find around the house,” Caspert said. At the fair, it was cardboard rolls from paper towels and toilet paper. “They just use their imagination. That’s what it’s all about.”
Janice Douglas of East Rutherford came to the fair with daughter, Jessica, 10, and daughter’s friend, Toni Ann Mandell, 9. The girls thought the “eco-fun” traveling art studio idea was a great one.
“This is the best fair I’ve ever been to,” Jessica said. “I’ve never been on an ‘art bus’ before.”
Other local businesses and groups exhibiting at the fair included Secaucus UNICO, Friends of the Secaucus Library, Immaculate Concepcion Church, Knights of Columbus Council #12769, Wrap 4 A Smile Foundation, and the Hackensack Riverkeeper, Inc.
Joseph Passantino may be reached at JoePass@hudsonreporter.com.