Summer festivals abound, but Fruitland Fun Days stands out as an opportunity to not only enjoy the end of summer, but to help local students make higher education possible.
Jill Walter, the event’s organizer, says each year she loves, “giving back to the kids by giving them scholarships, especially when we can give away five or six. “The Fruitland Park Board, which runs Fun Days, puts all the event’s profits aside as a scholarship fund. Seniors at Louisa-Muscatine Junior and Senior High School (L&M) can apply for the one-time scholarship. During L&M’s commencement and scholarship ceremony in May, Walter presents the scholarships, with values ranging from $500 to $750, depending on the number awarded.
To fund the scholarships, Fruitland Fun Days keeps its lineup fresh. Friday, September 7th, features events that cater especially to kids, with three hours of inflatable time at Drake Park. Inflatables include a rock wall with slide, both toddler and older kid obstacle courses, and a variety of bounce houses. The city will also make a photo booth with plenty of props available at this time. While enjoying the fun, kids can enjoy a free hot dog and water.
On Saturday, September 8th, the Fruitland Volunteer Fire Department starts bright and early with an all you can eat pancake breakfast beginning at 7:00 am. After filling up on pancakes, browse the craft fair in Drake Park which begins at 9:00 am and runs all day. At 10:00 am, the Fruitland Fun Days parade steps off from City Hall. Following the parade, grownups can play bingo or register for the corn hole tournament scheduled for 2:00 pm. Kids can get in on the fun as well with a special game of Cinco, just for them, at 2:00 pm. Throughout the day, anyone may check out the car show, which runs from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm or pay another visit to the inflatables between 11:00 am and 5:00 pm. Fun Days rounds out with three exciting musical acts, the newly inducted Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band Crusin’ from 4:30-5:30 pm, Heidi Henry from 6:00-8:30 pm, and L&M graduate turned Nashville super star Dallas Hendrix from 9:00 pm to 1:00am.
Whether you have attended Fruitland Fun Days for longer than you can remember, or have never gone before, this event has something for you, and you will feel good knowing that you helped local students make their college dreams a reality. While the event features free admission, concessions and registration for certain events (such as showing a car in the car show or having a table in the craft fair) do cost money. For more information, visit www.fruitlandia.com