MARGATE — Clouds filled the sky, but the rain held off Saturday afternoon so people could enjoy the first of the two-day 12th annual free Funfest by the Bay.
For a six-block stretch from Decatur to Coolidge avenues on Amherst Avenue, food, live music and craft vendors lined up on both sides of the street. The festival boundaries were bracketed by appropriate games for really young children on the south end and activities for school-age children at the north end.
Rich Kruger was happy to spend another weekend in southern New Jersey at Funfest.
Kruger, a grandfather, is in southern New Jersey every weekend, if he can be, between mid-May and mid-September even though he lives in Philadelphia. This was his first Funfest because he usually doesn’t visit this late in the year.
“I think this is great. It’s like they took the beach and transferred it to Amherst,” Kruger said.
One of the festival’s more entertaining attractions was Eric Dasher’s Brain Wash Game Show, which was like a portable version of “Jeopardy.” He asked children true-and-false questions and tested their knowledge about sports, movie quotes and cliches. Dasher features children for the most of the day, but he gives the adults a chance before he finishes for the night. Dasher, game’s creator and host, was invited to Funfest for the first time last year. His setup did well enough to merit a return visit.
“We are here to have a good time,” said Dasher, 48, of Burlington County, between rounds, who added he’s not concerned about who really is the smartest.
Miss New Jersey Lindsey Ann Petrosh could be seen at eye level on foot and also hoisted high above the crowd while been driven slowly down the street. Miss New Jersey was Saturday’s attraction, and the Phillie Phanatic will be greeting children today.
The dog show also is scheduled for today. Some visitors brought their dogs Saturday in preparation for possibly competing today.
Denise Tocicki, 55, who lives here, came to Funfest with two her dogs, Charlie, a small morkie, and Snoop, a flat-coated retriever. Snoop competed in the dog show last year. He came in second place with his talent of catching a frisbee.
“Everybody loves Snoop,” Tocicki said. “He has to come in first (this year).”
Bob Sachs, 75, of Ventnor, had not made a final decision Saturday about whether he would enter his 90-pound pitbull, Cheetah, in the dog show. The dog is so big she is intimidating, but Sachs said when he adopted her, she was afraid of everything. He believes she was abused.
“A lot of people come over and pet her,” said Sachs, who added his main reason to come to the festival was to eat, and he already had sausage and funnel cake.
The WZXL-FM 100.7 sound stage featured Tony P., acoustic rock duo, before the electric sounds of The Groove were heard later Saturday. The Groove, which featured mostly students from the Charter-Tech High School for the Performing Arts in Somers Point, treated the crowd to an instrumental medley of Led Zeppelin songs.
Musical acts scheduled for today include popular Margarita Radio singer-songwriter Scott Kirby, the Bubba Mac Blues Band and the rock group Either Way.
In a sea of jewelers and artwork, Wendy and Michael Moore, 43, of Cochranville, Pa., had one of the more unique items for sale, handmade solar yard art. The base and the post is wood. The solar light is at the top, The husband and wife duo decorate the post with small objects, such seagulls, lighthouses or frogs, also made out of wood.
“We came here two years ago. We did well even though we had rain one day,” said Wendy Moore, who added she had a wonderful as she looked out towards the bay.
Contact Vincent Jackson: