Union city officials said this year’s Founders Day was more successful than in previous years.Parks and Recreation Director Kevin Arand attributes the large crowds to mild temperatures and family-friendly events during Saturday’s event.
“We had a great crowd in the morning and afternoon,” he said. “It seemed to me that there were more kids there than the previous three years’ total.“There was more for kids to do,” he added, “and of course the weather was unbelievable — that helped.
”He added that the evening hours, which featured music and dancing, were not as well attended as in previous years.“The nighttime was a little slower than normal, but as far as being a family event, it was very successful,” Arand said.
Assistant Police Chief Lt. Kyle Kitcher said there were no problems that needed police attention.
“It was very nice. We didn’t have a single problem,” Kitcher said. “We had a lot of families and a lot of participation from families — it was a great day. Very smooth.”
Arand added that his department will continue to offer family-friendly activities during future Founders Days.“We’ll keep as a family-oriented event and continue with that theme for the next year and years to come,” he said.
Arand further stated that there were few comments that Founders Day was again held in the city park instead of the Franklin County Courthouse Square.
“Everything that I heard seemed to be positive,” he said. “At the park, people are not bumping into each other.”The additional space provided for more opportunities, Arand noted.
“You can offer more things to do than you could downtown,” he said.
This was the third Founders Day that was held at the park since relocating there in 2010. It had located at the city park in the 1990s but was moved to the square after flooding in 2000.According to Arand, in the future there will be more advertising for the event.
“We could have gotten the word out better,” he said.
“We will probably do a little more.”This year there was a record turnout of the Union Area Chamber of Commerce Founders Day Run.
There were 178 runners and walkers this year, a sharp increase compared to last years event in which about 120 people participated, according to Chamber Executive Director Tammy Stowe
.“We were way up,” she said “It was a new route this year, but people seemed to like this route more than the previous one.”This was the 34th year of the run, Stowe said.Runner Carol Kuhlmann was recognized for participating for a 25th consecutive year.