The Marion Popcorn Festival will again be having a full slate of pageant opportunities for all age groups, newborn to 100 or more. If you are interested in taking part in any of the pageants, there will be an informational meeting for parents and participants at bluefusion located in the Plaza Shopping Center on Route 95 East on Saturday, July 11, 2015 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm in The Venue room. [Read more…]
Registrations are now being accepted for the annual Marion Popcorn Festival Golf Outing set for Saturday, July 25, 2015 at King’s Mill Golf Course.
Registration fees are $55 per player or $220 per foursome and include a steak dinner and lots of prize opportunities. [Read more…]
Country star Rodney Atkins and rock band Warrant have been named as the headliners for the 35th Marion Popcorn Festival. Atkins will take the main stage on Friday, September 11, and Warrant is set for Saturday, September 12. Both performances are at 8:30 p.m. and free to Festival attendees. [Read more…]
Boys and girls are invited to sign up to participate in a football camp and princess camp as part of the Poppin Springfest fundraiser. The event takes place on Saturday, May 16, 2015 from 11:30am to 12:30pm at Tri-Rivers Career Center.
Registration is $5 per child and includes picture with Blue Racers or royal court. Kids must be pre-registered by May 9, 2015. [Read more…]
The 2015 Marion Popcorn Festival is set for September 10, 11 and 12. The theme for this year’s event will be “Poppin’ Safari.”
Although the overall theme for the Festival is “The Big Pop”, the Festival’s parade and pageant events enjoy setting a secondary theme each year to give the events a coordinated look, as well as giving direction to the infinite creativeness of the participants. It was felt that the “Poppin’ Safari” theme would give parade entrants and pageant contestants a great outlet for their imaginative spark. [Read more…]
Get your winning design on the 2015 Festival T-shirt!!!
Ever wonder how the Marion Popcorn Festival gets those great designs every year for our official shirts? We get them from people just like you. [Read more…]
The Marion Popcorn Festival is the largest popcorn festival in the world, annually attracting crowds in excess of 250,000 over the three-day event held each weekend after Labor Day in Downtown Marion Ohio since 1981. [Read more…]
When the 2014 Marion Popcorn Festival Orville Redenbacher Parade steps off at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, September 4, a well-known radio personality will be at its helm. Hall-of-fame broadcaster Charlie Evers has been tapped as the 2014 Grand Marshal.
“Fair and warmer” is the way Evers has responded to the question “How are you?” for most of his life. Originally from Bucyrus, Evers began his radio career at Marion’s WMRN in 1949 when they hired him to watch their tent at the Crawford County Fair. He held a variety of jobs throughout his years at WMRN, including clean up, set up and tear down at area fairs and remotes, night watchman, even mowing the station’s lawn.
Evers’ dedication in aiding the station’s engineers eventually earned him that position, and then in 1968 he became an on-air personality. Thus began a career that drew listeners to love him and a host of activities to benefit the Marion area.
Challenged by a listener to push a peanut across the street with his nose in the early 70s, Evers began the WMRN Peanut Push – a legacy that still takes place on the first Saturday of December to raise money for the Junior Service Guild’s Christmas Clearing House.
Although Evers never lived on a farm, he became the station’s Farm Director in 1971 and eventually earned a state farmer’s degree. This drew him to chair a fundraising effort in 1978 that garnered $80,000 to rebuild a livestock arena destroyed by fire on the Marion County Fairgrounds … an arena that still today continues to bear his name.
For years, Evers would daily check the groundhogs in the woods next to the station to see if they were indeed out for Groundhog’s Day. Gaining listener interest, a contest was held to name Marion’s groundhog and the winning name was Buckeye Chuck … “Buckeye” for Ohio and “Chuck” as a play on woodchuck (another name for a groundhog) and “Chuck” Evers. This further led to a campaign aided by former state representative Walter “Doc” McClaskey to have Buckeye Chuck named the state groundhog in 1979.
In 1980, Evers also fronted a successful effort to track down Marion County’s missing Lady Justice and return it to its rightful place atop of the Court House dome.
Evers left WMRN in 1980 and went to WDIF where he led tours all over the country through a travel agency the station worked with. Later, he also did a morning show on WDCM, and now has a weekly call-in show on WWGH. “It’s an open call-in format,” said Evers. “Just call 740-383-9944 … I still love to talk to people.”
When asked about being named the grand marshal, Evers said, “I was surprised, excited … I just couldn’t believe it. I have a great affinity for the Popcorn Festival because of the Popcorn 100 bike tour. That’s where I got my biking start that eventually led to Bike Across Ohio.” Bike Across Ohio was another Evers endeavor which raised charitable funds for cancer.
Evers, who will be 80 later this month, says he’s led a full and interesting life. “I’m slowing down a little now,” said Evers, “but I keep busy doing the Colonial Reenactments making split-wooden shingles on a device that is over 200 years old.”
Evers has three daughters, Cathy, Angie and Amy, and eight grandchildren. He and his wife, Jeanne, live in eastern Marion County.
“We are truly honored,” said Mary Dutton, Marion Popcorn Festival Parade Chairman, “to have this man who has dedicated so many years to our community as our grand marshal. I hope the thousands lining the parade understand just how much this man has given of himself to Marion.”
Hanah Reiff captured the 2014 Miss Teen Popcorn title Saturday evening in festivities at River Valley High School.
“I can’t believe it,” said the newly crowned Reiff. “All the girls were so amazing and talented that I’m absolutely stunned to have won.” Reflecting on her year as Miss Teeny Pop 2011, she said, “I know what an honor it is to represent Marion and the Festival, and I’m thrilled I get the chance to that again.”
In her new capacity, Reiff will be featured at all Festival activities, including the Festival’s Orville Redenbacher Parade and performing from the main stage. She will also make numerous appearances throughout Ohio during the coming year.
For winning, Reiff received a $200 scholarship award sponsored by Anthony Farms, a crown sponsored by Joanne Cook, and an extensive prize package. She also captured the $50 Anything Popcorn award, sponsored by Carol & Gene Ault, with a “heartfelt” song to Poppy the Popcorn Boy. The 15-year-old River Valley High School student is the daughter of Toby and Angie Reiff of Marion. Her talent was a vocal selection.
Nabbing First Runner Up and a $100 scholarship was Karington Reed. She also won the $50 Evening Wear award and a $50 Commitment to Excellence award sponsored by Julie Kessler and Dr. Heather Columber Scowden & Dr. David Scowden respectively. The Grant Middle School student performed a vocal selection for her talent. She is the 13-year-old daughter of Vince and Kristin Reed of Marion.
Sydney Randall took Second Runner-up honors and a $100 scholarship. The 15-year-old Pleasant High School student’s vocal offer won her the $50 overall Talent award sponsored by Joanne Cook; as well as a $50 Community Service award sponsored by Dr. Heather Columber Scowden & Dr. David Scowden and Nancy & Steve Prater. Randall is the daughter of Brooks and Melissa Randall of Marion.
Third Runner Up and winner of a $100 scholarship is Alexis Ritter. The daughter of James and Lorri Ritter of Caledonia, Ritter clogged for her talent. The 14-year-old attends River Valley High School.
Named Fourth Runner Up and the winner of a $100 scholarship is Elizabeth Corwin, a 17-year-old student at Northmor High School. She also earned a $50 Community Service Award sponsored by Dr. Heather Columber Scowden & Dr. David Scowden and Nancy & Steve Prater. The daughter of Robert and Jennyfer Corwin of Galion gave a vocal presentation as her talent.
All four runner ups received generous prize packages in addition to their $100 cash awards which were sponsored by Tim Mooney’s The Muffler Center, Circle T Logistics, and Professional Park and Community View Apartments.
Other award winners were:
- The $50 Popcorn Spirit award sponsored by Peacock Water and Shirley’s Beauty Shop went to Kaylee Wallace. The daughter of Jennifer Martin and Tolbia Wallace of Marion gave a vocal presentation as her talent. She is a 15-year-old Harding High School student.
- Kimberly Smith was the winner of a gift basket from Studio 309 for capturing the Photogenic Award, a separate competition of which the results have no bearing on the Miss Teen Popcorn outcome. Smith is the 16-year-old daughter of Angela Baker of Caledonia and Kraig and Heather Smith of Marion. The River Valley High School student performed a lyrical dance.
Also competing were:
- Faith Colegrove performed an energetic dance and tumbling routine. The 14-year-old River Valley Middle School student is the daughter of Paul and Melissa Hines of Marion and Tim and Sarah Colegrove of Mt. Gilead.
- Tylar Saylor performed a jazz number for the talent portion. She is a 16-year-old Ridgedale High School student and the daughter of Heather and George Blair of Morral and Shanna Saylor of Caledonia.
- Paiton Bonsel is a 13-year-old student of River Valley Middle School. The daughter of Tiffaney Ralton of Marion, she performed a lyrical/acro routine.
All participants received participation gifts sponsored by Primrose Retirement Communities; bluefusion entertainment; The Warehouse; Dr. Heather Coumber; Realty Ohio, Julie Kessler; Custom Creation; Blue Streak Wash-N-Fill; Ryans; Marion Area Counseling Center, Circle T Logistics; Shear Perfection Styling Salon; Ashley Furniture; Nicholls Furniture; LA Tan; Peacock Water; The Dance Factory; Studio X; Joanne’s School of Dance; Douce Dance Studios, Suzanne Harris; Marion’s Hometown Talent; Mathews Dodge Chrysler Jeep; Days Gone By Photography; Thirty-one by Julie Muether; and Carroll’s Jewelers
Participants must be aged 13 through a senior in high school and live or go to school in Marion, Crawford, Delaware, Harding, Morrow, Union, or Wyandot County. Each contestant competed in evening wear, an on-stage question, talent, and the anything popcorn category.
Kay Gwinner, director of the Miss Teen Popcorn program, said, “We’ve always been pleased with the wonderful teens we are privileged to work with, and they would all have represented the Festival well. We know these young women come away winners just by having the courage to get up on that stage and participate.”