It's that time once again, and the slight chance of rain is not enough to keep folks away from the annual Springfest on Buell Island in Lowell this weekend.
"There are those who will come regardless, but it definitely helps if we have nice weather," said Lowell Mayor Doug Seese.
The forecast is calling for a chance of scattered thunderstorms each day, with temperatures in the upper 70s.
Around 60 to 70 vendors from as far as North Carolina and Florida will converge on the island this weekend offering everything from crafts to tube socks.
"Everything about the event is free unless you want to spend money on it," said Seese.
The food is always a draw to this and its sister event, Octoberfest, as well as entertainment ranging from bluegrass to gospel to classic rock.
If you go
What: 24th annual Lowell Springfest.
Where: Buell Island, Lowell.
When: Saturday and Sunday; parade at 10 a.m. Saturday; flea market, food, free entertainment.
Parking: Free on the island. Turn left off Ohio 60 northbound over the bridge and follow the signs.
For more information: 896-3046
Funds raised from the event go back into the village, according to Seese.
"Springfest benefits the village and helps us to do things we wouldn't normally be able to do," he said.
Groups including Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Women's Club have been donating their time and talents to prepare food for the event.
According to the church secretary, every able-bodied woman is expected to pitch in and help out and most do.
"It takes a lot of planning," said Nina Huffman, who has been at the church since 1998. "I know they work many Mondays making their noodles."
In the past, money raised has gone to take care of the park and purchase a dump truck for the village. An ongoing project of putting a slide in the community pool will benefit from this year's event.
The festivities officially kick off with a parade through the village at 10 a.m., although a buffet breakfast will be available on the island beginning at 7:30 a.m.
This year's parade marshal is someone who is well-known to many in the community who might have had her as a teacher.
Longtime Lowell elementary kindergarten teacher Judy Smith will be recognized for her commitment to students and has seen several generations of families grow up in the community.
According to an official at the school, Smith will be retiring at the end of this year and will spend her time at her family farm in Amesville.
"She was very excited to be named this year's parade marshal," Seese said.