The Popcorn Festival board has undertaken a major renovation project in Forest Park. If everything goes according to plan, nobody will even notice.
Electrical problems at past festivals have prompted Glenn Brown and the Popcorn Festival board to expand the park's network of underground power substations. The substations will provide power to temporary stations, movable posts that can be installed for events in the park and easily removed.
"We wanted something that didn't take away from (the appearance of) the park," Brown said.
Brown said the installation will allow the festival to accommodate a steadily increasing number of vendors who require an electrical supply.
"We needed enough lines to handle all the vendors who need electricity," he said. "This year almost all the vendors used electricity."
The total cost of the project will fall in the $3500-$4000 range, Brown said. Most of the hardware, including wiring, breakers and other items, was donated by Pell's.
"They've made major contributions on our wires and stuff," said Steve Stapp, Popcorn Festival board member. "Pell's has always been very community oriented."
Brown's assessment of the cost of the project does not include labor. He estimated some 2500 man hours have been invested in the current project. In addition to the efforts of board members and others close to the Popcorn Festival, Brown said he has received a number of unsolicited offers of assistance.
"Not only are people from the festival helping," he said, "but people from the community are coming in to help also."