Sharptown readies for 93rd Firemen’s Carnival

It wouldn’t feel like summer on the Eastern Shore without the traditional carnivals operated by volunteer fire companies.

One of the largest and longest-running of those is the Sharptown Firemen’s Carnival, opening for its 93rd year at 7 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 1. The time-honored tradition of the firemen’s carnival is enough to get people out for fun and games, but there are plenty of other reasons to pack up the kids and head to Sharptown: rides, games, food, live entertainment and remote broadcasts by local radio stations.

“We take pride in the family atmosphere and clean grounds,” said John Cooper, President of the Sharptown Volunteer Fire Department. “We have 13 rides and plenty of games for all ages, and parking and admission are free.” Rides include such carnival staples as a carousel, ferris wheel and Tilt-A-Whirl; then there’s a Himalaya, a Tornado that’s strictly for teens and adults with a 50-inch minimum height; and several kiddie-only rides.

Federalsburg resident Rick Cecil Jr. is looking forward to this year’s carnival, writing this on the carnival’s Facebook page: “It’s a fun place to take your family or hang out with some friends. Lots of fun games, activities to do. I like spinning the Tornado and making people sick, but hey, they love it!”

Although admission to the carnival is free, if you want to ride the rides the best bet is to purchase a wristband that entitles the wearer to ride all evening. Monday and Tuesday nights, the wristbands are $10; Wednesday through Saturday they’re $12.

There’s also an opportunity to win raffle prizes of up to $10,000 cash or one of several other prizes to be awarded the final night of the carnival.

New this year will be a gift card tree raffle, one valued at $750 and the other at $250. This is in addition to raffles totaling $12,000 cash — one for $10,000 and another for $2,000 — and another for a hunter’s package.

The carnival runs nightly except Sunday for three weeks, through Aug. 24. In addition to rides, carnival-goers will find plenty of traditional Shore carnival favorites including oyster fritter sandwiches, chicken, burgers and hot dogs, softshell crab sandwiches and more. Dessert and snack options include funnel cakes, ice cream and popcorn.

The carnival also offers live entertainment Wednesday evenings:

Aug. 7, Barren Creek Band; the carnival theme that evening is fire prevention.

Aug. 14, Set in Stone.

Aug. 21 Rock Creek

In addition, Monday, Aug. 5, Seaford online radio station US 98.5 will be on hand with a remote broadcast. Tuesday, Aug. 6, Salisbury radio station Froggy 99.9 will do a remove broadcast, and Monday Aug. 19, the final remote broadcast of the season will feature an encore by US 98.5.

The carnival opens at 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and is closed Sunday. There is no set closing time; this varies according to the crowds, according to the fire department website. No pets are allowed; however, service animals are permitted.

In case of bad weather, a decision will be posted on the website and Facebook page no earlier than 6 p.m.

Carnival grounds are located at the corner of Maryland routes 313 and 348 near Sharptown. Visit sharptown.net for additional information.

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