For many years folks in Central PA have looked forward to Labor Day weekend not just for the time off, but to attend Harrisburg’s Kipona Festival. Originally a 1 day festival that took place on the actual Labor Day holiday, over the years it has expanded to the whole weekend. Continuing in that vein the festival has morphed again: from Kipona Festival to the new name, Kipona Wine, Arts and Blues Festival. Along with the name change comes more to see and do as well as a new social aspect: the goal of raising autism awareness.
But Kipona fans need not worry – the favorite parts of Kipona will stay the same. The Artfest will also take place at Front and Market Streets from noon until 7 each day.
The Native American Pow-Wow will still be taking place on City Island by the 19th Hole. Kids love to see the dugout canoes and the various dances and costumes. The Pow-Wow is open Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. and then Monday from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. On Saturday before heading to the Pow-Wow head on over to the Carousel Pavilion on City Island and you can see the Breath of Nature Karate Tournament at 8 a.m.
Those with a touch of Emeril in their soul will be competing at the 35th Annual Keystone Regional Chili Cook-off sponsored by Giant. Taking place at State Street the cook off registration will be Friday, August 30th between 6-9 p.m. at 1833 Hummel Avenue in Camp Hill. The actual cook-off itself will take place on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Chief Chili will oversee everything all the way up until the awarding of over $2,000 in prizes at 4 p.m. Festival-goers have the opportunity to participate in 3 different contests for fun here:
1. Jalapeño Pepper Eating Contest at 12 noon
2. Fastest “Hands Free” Chili Eating Contest at 1 p.m.
3. Hot Wing Eating Contest at 2:15 p.m. (sponsored by Ted’s Bar & Grill)
Parents who have been to Kipona before know the drill- get the kids to the Belco Children’s Village! Bring money for the rides, games, bouncy house and food. On Saturday and Sunday between noon and 7 p.m. inside the Belco Children’s Village you will find face painting, a caricaturist, and a clown walking around on stilts greeting the kids. Special performances for the kids are as follows:
· KSongz (kids music) from 2-3 p.m. (Saturday/Sunday/Monday)
· John Dodge/Ventriloquist & Magician 4-5 p.m. (Saturday/Sunday/Monday)
· RADASH (Hip Hop) 6 p.m (Saturday only)
New this year will be the Jersey Outlaws Motor Boat Races taking place between noon and 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. A non-profit organization, the Jersey Outlaws Racing Association’s goal is to “keeping the heritage alive”. Folks should bring a blanket and sit along the river banks to enjoy the races. On Monday there will be canoe races beginning at 10 a.m.
On Monday there will also be the JT Dorsey Free Kick Street Soccer Tournament on State Street between Front and 2nd Streets. The time for this is 11:30 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Also new this year is the Wine Village at Front and Walnut Streets. After the kids spend all day running around and (hopefully) using up all their energy, frazzled parents can peruse the available wines and take something home to help them unwind from the day’s events.
Performers will also be putting on shows at the Community Stage, the Star Stage at Liberty, and at the Jazz Tent.
The Community Stage performances will be:
o Coalishun (Noon)
o Silvery City Rock N Blues Band (2 p.m.)
o Cruise Control Duo (4 p.m.)
o Kate Myers and the Aces (6 p.m.)
o Preston Dent (noon)
o Eric Himan & the Soultre Singers (2 p.m.)
o Richard Williams (4 p.m.)
o Addia Musiq (6 p.m.)
o FUNKTION (noon)
o Dann Stuber and the City Rhythm Band (2 p.m.)
o Bushmaster (4 p.m.)
In the Jazz Tent you will find:
o The Timeless Trio (2 p.m.)
o X Factor (4 p.m.)
o Robin Work (6 p.m.)
o Jazz Me Band (2 p.m.)
o Steve Rudolph (4 p.m.)
o Andy Mowatt (6 p.m.)
o Mike Banks (Noon)
o Dave Wilson Trio (2 p.m.)
o Nate Carabello (4 p.m.)
And finally, on the Star Stage at Liberty:
o Strawberry Moon (1 p.m.)
o Don Johnson Project (3 p.m.)
o Octavia Blues Band (5 p.m.)
o All Up on It (7:15 p.m.)
o Mahajbee (1 p.m.)
o Suze ( 3 p.m.)
o Wake Up Call (5 p.m.)
o The Soul Men (7:15 p.m.)
o Allyson Taylor Band (1 p.m.)
o Second Chance Band (3 p.m.)
o Bottle of Blues (5:30 p.m.)
For additional information on the Kipona festival please call (717) 255-3020.
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