By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers
TAYLOR — Organizers of the city’s upcoming Summer Festival wanted to add more youth-friendly events to this year’s weekend event, some of which were already in place.
Mayor Rick Sollars said one of the city’s existing attractions had been overlooked in the past.
“It never made sense to close the Heritage Park Petting Farm during our summer festivals,” Sollars said in a statement. “It’s one of the biggest ‘destination attractions’ we have.”
The petting farm previously had been closed during the summer staple, but will be open for most of the weekend when the Summer Festival begins Thursday and runs through Sunday. A “Family Fun Zone” in the park will include the petting zoo and a variety of inflatable bouncies courtesy of MotorCity Moonwalks.
The family attractions join the traditional lineup of activities and entertainment this weekend. Elliott’s Amusements again will operate a carnival midway along Pardee Road. Carnival armbands will be available for $20, and rides will operate from 4 to 11 p.m. Thursday, noon to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 1 to 8 p.m. Sunday. Armbands for MotorCity Moonwalks will be available for $10. Tickets to the petting farm will be sold for $5.
Other attractions include the beer garden in the north end of the Sheridan Center, which will open at 6 p.m. each day of the festival.
Live music will be on hand beginning with Rock Show — a Journey tribute band — at 7 p.m. Friday, and Rolling Stones tribute band Satisfaction at 9 p.m. Tickets will be available at the gate for $5.
Saturday’s lineup includes several acts beginning at 5 p.m., including Detroit grassroots musician Ty Stone, Americana group Joe Jaber and the Last Divide, and the headline act, country music star Phil Vassar, named as “Billboard” magazine’s Country Songwriter of the Year. Tickets for Saturday’s show are $10 in advance (www.etix.com), $15 at the gate.
Saturday’s events will end with the Masco Taylor Summer Festival Fireworks Display, which city officials said has become one of the premier displays in the region.
For more information go to www.taylorfestival.com.
(James Mitchell can be reached at [email protected].)