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The Versailles High School (VHS) Alumni Association is hosting an event that’s sure to bring many to the village on Saturday, Sept. 11, at Versailles Heritage Park.
It’s the alumni association’s first MusicFest, set to be held from noon to 11 p.m.
Holly Keiser, chair, and Ken DeMange are partnering in bringing the festival here. Serving with them on the board are Steve Cordonnier, Kathy Ording, Bonnie Bey and Heather Luebke.
They invite people of all ages from all communities to attend. Admission is free.
Their main focus is on the youth of the community, with a portion of the profits going toward high school scholarships.
“The community had something similar to this on one stage in 2012,” said DeMange, who said he hopes this year’s festival will become an annual event.
They urge those planning to attend to bring their lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy the 12 musical acts on three stages set up in the park…at the amphitheater, the social tent and the round shelter house.
Food will be provided by the Versailles Music Boosters and Kona Ice at the east shelter house from 11 a.m. to l0:30 p.m. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase.
“There will be multiple social tents serving the beverages,” DeMange said. “However, carry-in foods or beverages are not permitted.”
A Tribute to Veterans Ceremony will open the festival from 11:45 a.m. to noon at the amphitheater, featuring Taps and a 21-gun salute.
Yes, it is being held on the 20th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, but it was not planned for that date purposely.
“It was hard to find a date,” he said. “We had to wait on Covid to see when to have it. I announced it during the week of Poultry Days.”
Another feature of the day, in addition to the 12 performances, will be five local authors participating in a book-signing event from 2 to 4 p.m. in the north yard. Signing books will be Jim Eiting with two books, Jodie Bohman with two books, Cynthia Vogel with a book, the Versailles Historical Society with two books and Connie McEldowney with a book.
Ken, who comes from a musical family himself, said his son Mason is the voice director for Versailles High School and its Amplified Show Choir which will perform from 1 to 1:45, and his other son, Tyler, is a member of Empty Tank, set to entertain from 9 to 11 p.m.
Except for two acts, the entertainers are associated with the alumni association.
DeMange said the VHS Alumni Association was re-established in 1993.
“The only remaining member is me and one other person,” he said. “We used to have an all-class reunion in downtown Versailles and it was successful. Now the events we sponsor are the softball event at the K of C Hall the first weekend in August; and the annual FareFest the third week in August. This year at the FareFest, we served food, beer and wine to over 1,110 guests. We featured 18 local restaurants, 14 breweries and 43 wineries.”
Bands for Saturday’s performances are being paid by the alumni association to perform and will be presenting three genres of music…showcasing music from big band to today’s tunes.
“The weather is supposed to be gorgeous,” said DeMange.
I am a Darke County native living in the Ansonia area with my son. I have been in journalism 50+ years and enjoy what I do.
Contact Darke County Now Media Correspondent Linda Moody @ email@example.com or 937-337-1955.