A favorite summer tradition in Pawling is set to return next month as the Pawling Fire Department prepares for its annual carnival. This year, the carnival will be moving to Lakeside Park, and department officials are confident that the new location will allow for the festivities to be bigger and better than ever. The PFD carnival is the department’s largest annual fundraiser, and will provide several nights of fun to benefit a worthy cause in the community.
In recent years, the PFD carnival has been held in the business district of the village. This year, the location was unavailable, forcing organizers to consider a new location for the carnival, parade, and fireworks display. “We loved having our carnival there,” explains Pawling Fire Chief Everett White. “It was picturesque, walking down the street and seeing the carnival there during the first week of August. But anyone who was there on Friday or Saturday night knows it was elbow to elbow. When we first started, we had half a dozen rides, last year we had ten. We didn’t have any room for more rides or midway attractions. We just outgrew the space.”
With the previous location no longer a viable option, the PFD decided to move the festivities to nearby Lakeside Park. “The move to Lakeside was really our only choice,” says Chief White. “They’ve made a lot of improvements there. The Buildings and Grounds Department takes great care of the property. And they’ve put in new sidewalks, so you can walk all the way to the park from the village.”
On Friday, August 3, the carnival will hold its traditional parade. Due to the change in location, the procession will now stretch from Town Hall at 160 Charles Colman Boulevard and end at Lakeside Park. The parade promises to be expansive, with seventeen fire companies from surrounding counties already committed to attend.
The carnival will run from Wednesday, August 1, until Saturday, August 4; there will be no shortage of festivities for everyone to enjoy. The PFD will once again be contracting All Star Midway Inc. to supply rides. Officials have requested fifteen rides for the carnival, with options for both adults and children. Wristbands will be available for purchase nightly for $25. As always, there will be midway games and prizes, a beer tent, raffles, food, and bingo under the lights. Lakeside Park, the location of Pawling’s successful Independence Day Celebration on July 1, has ample parking. Festivities will conclude with fireworks on Saturday, August 4, beginning at dusk.
With the move to Lakeside Park, PFD officials are embracing the change in venue in the hope that it will become a new tradition for the community. “We’ve found a new home in Lakeside Park, and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever,” says Chief White.