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Outdoor Enjoyment - RiverFest Rolls On
Petting Zoo
These three youngsters enjoyed the company of rabbits, chickens, and a goat in the Backyard Farm set up at Jacob Myers Park for the RiverFest celebration. - photo by VIRGINIA STILL/THE NEWS

The cloud cover occasionally parted, allowing the sun to appear off and on throughout the day during RiverFest at Jacob Myers Park in Riverbank on Saturday, April 26. The festivities started out with a 5K run.

RiverFest is a new event to the Riverbank community that combined ‘Beyond Earth Day’ with a splash of outdoor information and activities.

There were number of vendors on hand with products ranging from Original Owl, Scentsy, Tupperware, Sports Authority and many more.

There were a few booths that offered food like Looney Bin 2 BBQ Team that served up tri-tip sandwiches, ribs, with pasta and salad or for the lighter appetite, nachos.

Dale’s Gourmet Kettle Popcorn out of Ripon had bags of the sweet, salty treat on hand for guests to enjoy. Hillbilly Tea had his booth set up for those that were parched and wanted a cold beverage.

The Riverbank High School Athletic Booster Club offered an assortment of candy and hamburgers and hot dogs along with a few other items including Bruin gear from sweatshirts to tank tops and accessories.

Central Valley Community Resources Director Darlene Barber-Martinez had chicken and beef tacos with all the fixings available for hungry guests.

The River radio station 105.5 was out there playing some tunes for the festival goers.

Informational booths that were on hand included Schneider Electric, the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department’s STARS volunteers, Kiwanis Club, and River Journey, which also had freebies to offer the guests.

Fearless Freedom Clothing had several items on hand like tank tops and sweatshirts. For every Fearless Freedom Product that is purchased 25 percent will go toward helping feed and clothe the helpless, needy and homeless in the local area.

Spec Ops Live Play had a course set up for people of all ages to engage in a friendly archery game. The Live Play attracted several people as well as some City of Riverbank staff members like City Manager Jill Anderson, Parks and Recreation Supervisor Kerrie Webb, Administrative Clerk Juanita Argumedo and Vice Mayor Cal Campbell.

There were other activities in the kids zone for all the family to enjoy like pony rides, the climbing wall, the backyard farm petting zoo, duck toss, and face painting.

Boy scouts troop 1100 and Cub scouts pack 10 brought their supplies out to build bird feeders out of pine cones and recycled water bottles. The Riverbank Historical Society Museum had several items of information to give out to guests and was collecting donations for the new museum expansion that Riverbank Engine #1 would be displayed in.

Diane Talbert with the Royal Neighbors manned a booth and had information on hand for interested parties. Riverbank Cares had a 1957 Grumman canoe with canned foods, boxed cereal, and several other items on hand and were accepting donations.

The day was a bit cool and the weather the day before was very stormy, however the April showers did not prevent people from coming out and enjoying the first RiverFest event.

“I just want to thank our sponsors and all the vendors that came out and I think it will be a good annual event that we will proceed with,” said Director of Parks and Recreation, Sue Fitzpatrick.

“My time here has been great,” expressed Campbell. “There are a lot of free activities for all ages.”

“I have been having a blast, the highlight of course was being lapped by Vice Mayor Campbell in the 5K this morning,” said Anderson. “I think this is a great event, safe, family friendly and this has been a great success and we see this building over time.

“We look forward to planning the second annual RiverFest.”