Heritage Days expands at new site
By Fran Odyniec
There’s somewhat of a new location for the Third annual Plain City Heritage Days which will take place Saturday, May 19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Previously held in the Flatiron District along West Main Street and on the grounds of Der Dutchman Restaurant, this year’s event will be concentrated in the fields next to Der Dutchman Restaurant just off the intersection of West Avenue and U.S. Route 42. Heritage Days is presented by the Plain City Heritage Group and supported by the Uptown Plain City Organization.
“We’ve expanded,” Wayne Nisly, coordinator for Heritage Days, said of the event’s one location. “We’ve tripled the size of the grassy area, and will offer folks an experience that will include more than a hands-on peek of the Amish and Mennonite heritage of Plain City.”
It will be a fun, social day with family entertainment and authentic Amish food, added Nisly.
“We will give people a taste of the area’s heritage,” he promised.
The day’s festivities will begin at 9 a.m. with a presentation of the colors by the combined color guard of the Plain City VFW and American Legion posts, an invocation and the playing of the National Anthem. Plain City Mayor Sandra Adkins will deliver the welcoming address.
Then it’s open season on a day chock full of fun, food, traditional crafts, and entertainment.
Right smack dab in the middle of things, folks can watch corn being shelled, ground, and turned into old fashioned corn pancakes over an open fire and just right for a morning or an afternoon appetite.
On either side of the pancaking, craftspeople will demonstrate how things were once made in the Plain City area with the likes of a broom maker, a blacksmith, a scroll woodworker, a rope maker, and noted local woodworker Eli Park with a display of his many works.
Just across from these craftsmen, folks can go right up for a close inspection of a collection of antique farm equipment as well as the grinder and the sheller used to prepare corn for those pancakes that should still be flippin’ across the aisle.
Heading north from the corn sheller, folks will witness some of the most fiercely artistic competition among restaurant and food service professionals and culinary students from around Ohio and the nation as they use their creative skills to carve flowers, characters, and whatever their imaginations can cook up from watermelons, honeydews, cantaloupes and other fruits and vegetables.
Sponsored by the ever-popular master Olympic ice-carver Greg Butauski, of Plain City and The Art Experience, this year’s vegetable carving competition is a sanctioned event in the World Food Sculpting event series. The first leg of the competition takes place at 10:45 a.m. with second leg commencing at 1 p.m.
After a stop at the quilting ladies to observe the time-honored art of quilt making, folks can swing back toward the center of the festivities and take in the beauty of Yoni’s Greenhouse Plant Display. While admiring the wide range of plants, look for NBC4’s garden expert Tom McNutt who will be on hand to talk horticulture.
If the kids get a little itchy along the way, take them over to work the play set and jumping pen due east of the greenhouse display. And, if they behave real well, treat them to an ice cream over at Miller’s Homemade Ice Cream.
As the clock strikes noon, the Third annual Heritage Days Pulled Pork BBQ Contest will get underway at the Uptown Plain City Organization’s tent. Local newspaper writers and public officials, along with special guests Buckeye Man and NBC4’s Tom McNutt will put their taste buds to the test to judge who makes the best BBQ pulled pork in Plain City. First place takes home $100.
Susan Sajdyk, of Plain City, last year bested a field of 14 entries to lay claim to the best pulled pork BBQ of 2011.
On the entertainment front down on the south end of the field, those famous North American Spotted Draft horses, Bess and Ben, will be in harness for pasture wagon rides. And Willie, the Standard Bred Horse, will be ready for Amish buggy rides.
Keep an eye out, pardner, for some western-style excitement after you’ve taken that wagon or buggy ride. Western riders will demonstrate stationary steer roping, horse maneuvers, and riding patterns.
By this time, your appetite may be telling you to go north up to the food serving area. And it would not be misleading you. Yutzy’s Farm Market, the Cheese House, the Dutch Kitchen, and Der Dutchman Bakery will have a virtual cornucopia of food and pastries ready for you to sample.
And in the same area, Carlisle Gifts and Miller Furniture will be there with coupons and specials.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all, well, according to Wayne Nisly, you haven’t.
“There’s also the barrel train rides, several ponies, a calf, sheep, chickens, goat milking, and maybe some rabbits,” Nisly said. “And face painting, Shad Pole, the wandering balloonist and clown, and twirling performances from the Starlight Twirlers and the Auxiliary Creation Twirlers.”
To top it all off, the boys from Beachy Barns will build two barns, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, across from the row of craftspeople, just to show people how it’s done.
Nisly, with a quiet but certain confidence, summed up what can be expected at this year’s Heritage Days.
“We’ll give people a taste of heritage,” he said.
For more information, click on www.plaincityheritagegroup.com.
Think you can make the best pulled pork BBQ in Plain City?
Here’s your chance to find out at the Third annual Heritage Days Pulled Pork BBQ Contest, courtesy of the Uptown Plain City Organization and Darby Grace Church.
There’s no entry fee and you may enter as many times as you wish.
Here are the rules:
• Your entry must be pulled pork (pork shoulder)
• Your entry should be 1 pound of meat.
• Bring your entry to the judge’s tent between noon and 12:15 p.m. in an “official” white foam container which is available at the Uptown Plain City Organization tent.
• Your BBQ sauce must be homemade.
• Each entry will be judged by a panel of area celebrity judges. Entries with the best scores take the top three prizes.
• Judging criteria: texture; taste; and tenderness
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.