The 2015 Cars & Crafts Show at the Ulster County Fairgrounds this Saturday, May 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. promises to have a little something for everybody. Car buffs will find plenty of well-maintained vehicles to admire. Enthusiasts of locally handcrafted goods will appreciate the juried craft show. Kids can bounce on the inflatables and make their own crafts. Everyone can enjoy the live music, food and camaraderie. On top of all that, proceeds raised go to a good cause.
The show is sponsored by the all-volunteer New Paltz Fire Department. This is the second year for this particular version of the Cars & Crafts Show, said firefighter Joe Jurain, one of the organizers. “We had done some car shows in the past, and a flea-market-type car show a few years ago. But we thought we’d change it up and do something we didn’t see other people doing. This is a unique niche and a way for us to raise some funds for the company.”
“The company” is the incorporated part of the village fire department. While the village government budgets for the firefighting end of things, fundraising events like this are the responsibility of the members. Resources might be needed, for example, to replace the television or furnishings in their ready room. Or they might have something social in mind, like a family day barbecue to thank the volunteers for the hours they put in.
“Our working budget for anything like that is money that we have raised for ourselves,” said Jurain. “We also started a fund for our members if they get hurt, and some of the money we raise during the year goes to offset the cost of maintaining Station #2.”
Admission to the Cars & Crafts Show on Saturday is $1. Kids age 12 and under enter free. Additional funds will be raised through sales of raffle tickets for goods donated by local businesses and sales of food prepared by New Paltz Fire Department members. One of their number, Cory Wirthmann, is bringing a smoker to prepare the pulled pork they’ll be offering, said Jurain. Wirthmann owns the Scarborough Fare gourmet market on Front Street. Ulster Savings Bank is also one of the show’s sponsors.
Radio station personality “Simon” from 92.7/96.9 WRRV will broadcast live on site from noon to 2 p.m. and bring their prize wheel. DV8 Entertainment will serve as deejay, and live bands are expected. New Paltz Karate Academy will do demonstrations. Fiberflame, the Saugerties-based DIY craft studio, will be on hand to make crafts with kids.
The State Police brought their rollover simulator to the event last year; it’s hoped they’ll be back this year. The Ulster County Sheriff’s Office may also bring their dive tank to do a demonstration of search and rescue. Details can be confirmed closer to the show on Facebook at “New Paltz Fire Department, Inc. Cars and Crafts.”
And of course, there are the cars and the crafts.
The event is open to vehicles of any type, not just the classic cars. Prizes will be awarded. Information on how to register a vehicle last-minute is on the fire department’s website at www.newpaltzfire.org. “We’re hoping that as the show grows each year, we can add more craft vendors and more cars,” said Jurain. “Who knows? … Maybe we can fill the field eventually.”
There will be dozens of craft vendors selling their wares (the day before Mother’s Day, as it happens). The show is juried. Many of the artisans are locally based.
“Come get a hamburger, check out an old car, bring the kids to jump in the bouncy houses, hear some live music, and take a look at somebody’s fine photography work,” urged Jurain. Ultimately, the event is basically an opportunity for families to get together. And when one considers that a firefighter’s family signs up for the work, too, in essence — it affects the entire household when that alarm call comes in the middle of the night or during a holiday — it’s a good chance to thank some of the people who are always there when your family needs them.