BY BRYNA LARSEN
Daily Press Writer
With clear sunny skies, the smell of fall leaves in the air and a strong sense of community pride, the Craig Downtown Business Association hosted the fall Golden Leaf Festival on Saturday to hundreds of visitors.
In honor of the fall solstice, changing weather and changing seasons, the group planned a fall festival with activities for children and adults. The event was held along Yampa Avenue in downtown Craig.
"A lot of people kept saying there's nothing to do," said Nadine Daszkiewicz, president of the Downtown Business Association. "We've been talking about doing something all summer. We wanted to have all of the local people come out and participate in the festival. We wanted live music and we didn't solicit vendors from outside the community."
The event featured live entertainment by local bands, crafts by local artists, food by local cooks, bake sales to benefit student organizations, face painting, balloons for children, sidewalk sales by small businesses, and a generally good feeling in the air.
"I saw a lot of people who were doing lots of socializing. People weren't coming downtown just to buy things and spend money," Daszkiewicz said. "They were walking around and having a good time. I think people were getting reacquainted with the community. It was a beautiful day.
"Maybe they heard the music or smelled the food. But, whatever it was that brought the community out for this event, it was a good thing."
The DBA group estimated that 500 to 1000 people attended the event.
"If somebody missed this event, then they really missed something. It was truly wonderful," Daszkiewicz said. "We're definitely planning to do this type of event again next year. We even had a lot of tourists here because of the rodeo and school sporting events."
Daszkiewicz said that more than 40 vendors set up booths for the Golden Leaf Festival.
"It was wonderful," she said. "We had something for everyone."
The event came on the heels of Philanthropy Days and Sheep Wagon Days, a grand finale to a week of community activities.