If you were one of the only 10 to 12 people who didn’t attend Rotary Club of Carmel’s CarmelFest this year, we missed you. Although I am not absolutely sure there were only 12 Carmelites missing from the largest party in Carmel, it sure did feel like it.
The credit for any success goes entirely to the dedicated volunteers who make up the core CarmelFest Operating Committee. The Committee is made up of division leaders who manage teams responsible for specific CarmelFest attractions or operational areas. Sally Bauer and LeAnn Wischmeyer managed the Volunteer Corp. It takes more than 300 people willing to serve 2 to 4 hour shifts directing traffic, selling Kidzone tickets or emptying trash cans. Sally also worked with Rodney Mileski of Connection Church who brought us 56 high school students from Texas to work CarmelFest.
The parade stepped off under the direction of Peggy Powell. Assisting her in key roles were Bec Hunter, Kurt Rupenthal and Barbara Ellis. Gov. Mike Pence chose CarmelFest as the place to spend his July 4th and we enjoyed having him in our parade. Social Media played a larger role in our 2013 media plan and Cindy Roberts Greiner along with Robin Luehrmann tweeted and Facebooked info to you about what we had to offer.
If you enjoyed visiting the Marketplace booths around the fountain, you can thank Kay and Doug Thompson for the great selection. Or, if you ate too many elephant ears or regret the third Lemonade Shake-Up, blame Food Committee Chairman Jon Olson. The guy with the coolest job was Paul Shulte, providing ice to food vendors and first-aid stations along our parade route. Hopefully your kids enjoyed the work of Peter Primason in the Kidzone. He made sure they were bounced and dizzied.
With four stages, it took a team to make it rock. Sue Westermeier, Brian Carriger and Dan Chester headed up our Entertainment Committee hitting home runs by booking the Wright Brothers, Carmel Symphony Orchestra and the superstar group My Yellow Rickshaw. Marnie Glanner and Tatyana Komorova organized the popular CarmelFest Has Talent, once again amazing a huge crowd with the talent from our own backyard. Bryan Ferry made everything cooler in the North Zone.
Behind the scenes it would normally take an army but we have Gary Sexton and Mike Jeeter. They are responsible for facilities and anything the team can throw at them. Two amazingly resourceful and calm men who come through no matter what the request. Our Development Team of Jason Randlett and Andrew Nisenshal raised enough money from our beloved corporate sponsors to make sure there was a CarmelFest this year. They pulled it in and Ann Baker counted it and deposited it. And finally, our Transportation Director Randy Sorrell made sure everyone got to where they needed to go, on time and in one piece.
Thank you to every volunteer, sponsor City Employee and guest who celebrated CarmelFest’s 25th anniversary.