West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival a hit despite weather

By Geri Gibbons - For Times Leader
Four young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12. -
A little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday. -
Ashlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival. -
Ashlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival. - -
Four young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12. - -
A little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday. - -

WEST PITTSTON – Despite raindrops and falling temperatures, the final day of West Pittston’s Cherry Blossom Festival brought hundreds of area residents to the banks of the Susquehanna River to eat, shop and enjoy entertainment.

Lynn Yasenchak, a vendor at the event, said she thought she knew why.

“People are like the cherry blossoms,” she said. “When the weather broke, they wanted to come on out.”

Yasenchak, owner of the Backwoods Brittle Company, said she was impressed with the community spirit exhibited by attendees of the event as they made their way past her table.

“You can tell people like the music, the environment, the food,” she said. “It seems to be a very close knit area.”

Tom Bubul, of West Pittston Tomorrow, said he was enjoying the timely blooming of the cherry blossom trees.

“I’ve grew up just down the street, and I can remember years when they bloomed late and even some years when spring comes early,” he said. “But this year was perfect.”

He also had a clear memory of the first festival 47 years ago.

“It’s so really grown,” he said. “It started off small. There’s now many more vendors and much more activity.”

And although Saturday was warmer and dryer, Bubul said Sunday’s attendance was robust.

“We were thinking it was because yesterday everyone was doing yard work,” he said. “Today was a real day off and people came on down.”

Katherine Potter, 11, the 2015 Little Miss Cherry Blossom, took the stage this year with the David Blight dancers.

To Potter, who has danced at the event every year since she was 5, the day was a family affair.

Sarah Knorr, her aunt, said the extended family comes out every year, rain or shine, to support Katherine and enjoy the day’s activities.

Cousins Ava Knorr, 9, Carley Knorr, 7, and Julianne Potter, 9, came hungry and enjoyed the culinary offerings, which included popcorn, fries and pizza.

Vendor Maria Pardini has been coming to the festival for four years described attendance on Sunday as having “a steady flow.”

“I think that everyone has had cabin fever so long that they couldn’t wait to get out,” she said. “People seem to having a very good time.”

Lynn Burbank, of West Pittston Parks & Rec Board, was on hand to provide information about upcoming activities, including the Anthracite Run and a movie-in-the-park event.

“We’re just here getting the word out and spending time with our neighbors,” she said.

Four young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry2_faa-3.jpgFour young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12.

A little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry8_faa-3.jpgA little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday.

Ashlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry1_faa-3.jpgAshlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival.

Ashlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry1_faaCMYK-3.jpgAshlyn Loyack, 11, performed with the David Blight School of Dance on Sunday at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival.

Four young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry2_faaCMYK-3.jpgFour young ladies stood under the cover of the food tent at the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival as a light rain fell on Sunday. From left, Carley Knorr, 7, and her sister, Ava, 9; Julianne Potter, 9, and her sister, Katherine, 12.

A little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_wp_cherry8_faaCMYK-3.jpgA little rain didn’t stop people from attending the West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival on Sunday.
West Pittston Cherry Blossom Festival a hit despite weather

By Geri Gibbons

For Times Leader

Reach the Times Leader newsroom at 570-829-7242 or on Twitter @TLnews.

Reach the Times Leader newsroom at 570-829-7242 or on Twitter @TLnews.