North East Fireman's Cherry Festival Returns
Much-loved local carnival set to be in full swing for its 75th year
Wednesday through Saturday, July 6 - 9
The 75th annual North East Fireman's Cherry Festival is set to return this week in full swing after two years of drive-through events due to COVID-19-related restrictions. The festival will kick off on Wednesday, July 6 at 5:30 p.m. and will conclude on Saturday, July 9.
Attendees can expect all of the fan-favorite vendor selections, including the famous firemen's sausage sandwich, ox roast, chicken tenders, curly fries and the festival staple – cherry pies handmade by the Ladies Auxiliary.
The Cherry Festival Committee announced a change in ride companies after struggling to locate a company willing to travel to North East amidst the pandemic. This year, patrons can enjoy midway rides by Lisko Family Midway Amusements, along with craft and merchandise vendors and all the excitement of a normal, outdoor carnival.
The annual festival is the largest fundraising event for the North East Volunteer Fire Department (NEVFD), Fuller Hose Company #1 and Crescent Hose Company #2. The donations return directly to the local community, as they provide for expenses associated with operating the departments and the highest level of training for volunteers.
"The emergencies we run are real, the expenses are real, and this money helps us to help our community," paramedic and volunteer Jack DiOrazio III said in anticipation of the Cherry Festival.
The NEVFD is a full-service department, offering emergency medical services, wilderness and water rescue, and mutual aid support, on top of standard fire rescue services and fire prevention.
For the first time this year, festivalgoers may purchase a pre-paid card that can be used at all of the fire department food tents. According to DiOrazio, the cards feature the Cherry Festival logo.
The largest volunteer firemen's parade in Pennsylvania will also be returning to the Cherry Festival this year, beginning at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 9 on Main Street in North East.
"We are currently full with vendors," DiOrazio said. "We anticipate having crafts, merchandise, various foods, delicious lemonade, doughboys, and all the festival favorites."
Wednesday through Friday at 5:30 p.m., Saturday 12 p.m. // 31 North Lake Street, North East, PA 16428 // Free Attendance // necherryfestival.org