EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

September 17, 2010

Salemfest is packed with events

SALEM — This year's Salemfest has something for everyone, from foodies to animal lovers to history buffs.

"It's a chance to have some inexpensive fun and raise funds for good organizations, and become aware of the organizations that you might want to be part of," said Salemfest founder Betty Gay.

Since it launched in 2004, the event, which brings together local nonprofit groups and helps raise money, has grown tremendously. Gay said that became obvious when she assigned a letter to each of the organizations participating in the event for a flier she was putting together.

"We've used up the entire alphabet now for organizations," she said. "It goes A to Z. We started with six (in 2004) and now we have 26, and more than 26 events."

Those events include plenty of old favorites, like the St. David's eighth annual Professional Crafters Fair, held tomorrow and Sunday at the church.

"When we started seven years ago, we had about 17 crafters," Gay said. "There are 44 this year."

The event's popular church dinners will return this year. An international food festival at Triumphant Cross Lutheran Church will run from 4 to 7 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults, free for children 12 and younger.

At Tenney Memorial Methodist Church there will be an all-you-can-eat ham-and-bean supper from 4 to 6 p.m. for $7 for adults and $4 for children ages 5 to 12. Pleasant Street Methodist Church will serve ribs, coleslaw, baked beans, corn bread and more from 3 to 6 p.m.

Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for seniors and children under 12.

"People can eat their way through Salemfest, from breakfast to supper," Gay said.

Civil War historians will be on the Kelley Library grounds tomorrow and Sunday.

The Salem Animal Rescue League will have demonstrations on pet care and training, as well as animals to pet, tomorrow and Sunday at St. David's Episcopal Church.

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