We man the Shelterbox tent at the Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower's annual Summerfest. Another great success!thumbnail view
In Need of shelter?
Another great success for the the Rotary Club of Billericay Mayflower's annual Summerfest at Sun Corner.
A small band of members from our Club volunteered to run the Shelter Box tent at Mayflower's Summerfest on Sunday May 10, 2016. The demand was greater than we expected - not enquiries about Shelter Box itself - but for SHELTER!
The heavens did not exactly open but the day dawned grey and wet - that misty, dismal rain that has everyone reaching for umbrellas and plastic macs - and needing shelter.
In the first three hours we were delighted to provide cover for fellow Rotarians, supporters, amongst them, Mrs Beryl Ford, wife of Harmony Brass organiser, Brian and her lovely labrador guide dog (who just wanted a drink and lie-down) and the scantily costumed-dressed young dance group, Bailar from the Towngate Theatre, who were due to perform in the main arena and needed to stay dry until appearing. ...And anyone else who read the Shelter sign!
As the dance group leader said: "They are loving it all. They don't feel the cold."
Despite the disappointing start, the crowds began to roll up to enjoy the day's entertainment, regular half-hour band slots by musical groups in the huge bandstand, displays of military marching and young dancing groups and, as the sun began to come out, to look forward to more music, more events on the straw-baled show arena and a classic car display - always a highlight of the Summerfest.
Mayflower members had fingers crossed and eyes upwards to the sky. Someone must have got the rain-mat out because the afternoon proved even warmer and the sun even dared to shine from time to time. And the event looked like being as popular and successful as ever. Never easy to guage numbers with so many people swilling around the various charity and product stalls and enjoying the occasion. But the show was on again.
The food outlets were doing a roaring trade (even our Club members were seen engaging in stuffing hot dogs and bacon rolls) and the ice-cream van, deserted for most of the morning, would have welcomed the weather change. The mood as always, despite the rain, was positive and merry - kids hoisting balloons, friends meeting friends over a pint or a Pimms and the Summerfest was again looking what it is - a major event in the Billericay community calender.
A full report with photographs will appear in our July newsletter.