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Festival goers flock to Roann: Community hosts annual Covered Bridge Festival

By Mandy Mahan

ROANN -- The Roann Covered Bridge Festival took place in downtown Roann this past weekend, Sept. 10-12.

The festival took place as usual except without the parade, with a modified tractor pull, and with a request for festival goers to bring lawn chairs to sit in during the concerts rather than sitting on the normally provided bleachers, which were not provided this year due to the need for social distancing to slow the spread of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Donna Harman, Roann Covered Bridge chair, told The Paper of Wabash County that there were less people at the festival on Saturday than in past years, but that a good crowd still turned out for the events, especially the evening concerts, tractor pulls and for the famous Richvalley tenderloins.

“We had a lot of nice comments and the comment we heard most was, ‘At least you had your festival, people want to get out and live their lives,’” said Harman.

Planning this year’s festival in the midst of a pandemic proved to be challenging, according to Harman.

“It was a challenge, trying to decide what to keep on the schedule since our budget was less and we were not able to have our tenderloin meal as our fundraiser in April,” she said. “We canceled two of the main entertainment concerts this year to cut costs, and no arts and craft vendors. So, we hope we have good support for next year.

“Wabash County has always been good to sponsor the Roann Covered Bridge Festival and we are very thankful for our sponsors. I was pretty strong on still having some kind of a festival if at all possible. We do care about the people who attend our festival, and we posted signs for social distance, it was your choice to wear a mask or not.”

The weekend was filled with family fun such as food vendors, live concerts, tractor pulls, line dancers, clowns, 5-K, and other entertainment. 

Posted on 2020 Sep 15