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Nine-day local spring festival draws residents

March 27, 2019
By MELISSA BILL ( , Lehigh Acres Citizen

The Lehigh Spring Festival, "We the People," hosted its opening ceremonies on Friday, March 22, with a kick-off parade on Saturday at 11 a.m. The festival runs through March 30. Entrance to the festival is free, but a parking donation is appreciated.

Board member and festival MC, Andy Reisinger, opened ceremonies on Friday at 6 p.m., on the main stage at Veteran's Park. The American Legion did a raising of the flag which was followed the national anthem and a blessing by Elder Keith Freeman. Reisinger then introduced the dignitaries and major sponsors.

Reisinger also took the time to thank military personnel, veterans and first responders.

Article Photos

The Lehigh Spring Festival opened March 22 and runs through March 30.


"We are in Veterans Park and this is the perfect place to welcome our veterans and active military personnel who, without them, we might not be able to be here today. Let's give it up for all they have done," said Reisinger.

Following opening ceremonies attendees flocked to the park to check out the food vendor additions and hop on a slew of new carnival rides.

"We had a lot of requests for bigger rides for the adults and older kids, so we went with a new vendor this year, Megerle Shows Carnival. They brought some great rides out including our 100foot tall Ferris wheel," said Spring Festival Committee President Bob Dutka.

According to Dutka, it's the support of the community that keeps the festival going every year.

"The Lehigh Spring Festival provides a fundraising platform for local groups and organizations. It's these local group that help with parking receives and ticketing booths, who receive a percentage of the sales."

The first weekend of festivities wrapped up on Sunday, with a line-up of pageants that started at 11:30 a.m.

Miss Spring Festival 2018 winner Cassandra Browning and festival emcee Andy Reisinger hosted the pageants, which opened with the Baby Pageant. There were two divisions judged, a newborn to 18 months and 19 months to 3 years old.

The pageant is a festival tradition and a favorite among many in the community.

"Our whole family comes out to participate and support the pageants and other contests. I usually enter my bichon frise in the pet contest and showcase my art work, too. Today my granddaughter Karina Duran is entered into the toddler pageant. We love coming here each year," said Linda Washburn.

The remainder of the festival will feature local schools and dance studios, which take the stage to preform, and multiple shows on the Midway Stage every day by Nick's Kids Shows.

Attendees can take advantage of the Megerle Shows Carnival games and rides every day, as well as entertainment by Commodore Cutter, a Southwest Florida Pirate.

Sandy's Saloon is open daily until 9:30 p.m.

The final weekend of the festival will feature a barbecue contest, a display by the Lehigh Fire Department and a Car, Truck & Bike Cruise-In on Saturday.

Registration for the contest begins at 3:30 p.m. with a car show held from 4:30 to 8 p.m. There is a $20 donation with proceeds going to the American Legion Post 323.

The Honorary Mayor Race will also take place with all monies raised being split between the charity of the entries choice and the Lehigh Spring Festival. This year's race is between Jackie Palmer and Patrick Jackson. The winner will attend ribbon cuttings, ground breakings and other community activities requested by the Lehigh Acres Chamber of Commerce.

The Lehigh Spring Festival will feature live music on the stage every day.

For a full line-up of entertainment or upcoming contests and events by day, visit .



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