Bensalem continues the celebration of its 325th birthday with its Fall Festival
By Samantha Bambino
The fall weather may be taking its time to officially kick in this year, but that’s not stopping one of the Bensalem community’s favorite seasonal traditions. This Saturday, the township is hosting the annual Bensalem Fall Festival to not only continue the celebration of its 325th birthday, but allow locals of all ages to unite in a day of community pride.
The Fall Festival originated 25 years ago when the township turned 300 years old. What was then known as Community Pride Day has since evolved and grown with an expected 15,000–20,000 attendees this year, according to Amanda McDonald, manager of Bensalem community affairs and The Penn Community Bank Amphitheater.
“The community definitely looks forward to it,” she said.
The festivities begin at 11 a.m. on the scenic grounds of Bensalem’s Central Park at the township Municipal Complex. Upon entering the grounds, individuals and families are immediately able to start enjoying a variety of entertainment. A major highlight is the car show, which will feature everything from classic cars to motorcycles. Local firefighters will show off a display of their equipment while the Disc-connected K9s plan to put on an enthralling Frisbee show.
For the kids (and kids at heart), Michael Bonacci will perform a magic show while Steve Pullara and his Cool Beans Band will engage the crowd with some child-friendly sing alongs. Kids can try their hand at Rock N’ Roll Racing, Anywhere Mini Golf and the mobile video game theater, Gamin’ Ride. Afterward, families can take silly pictures in the festival’s new photo booth, which will be located under the main tent. According to McDonald, the pictures will be free as a way to give the community a keepsake to commemorate the experience.
Throughout the day, a variety of community groups will perform on the main stage, which includes routines by the students at Dance With Celeste and cheerleaders from the Bensalem Township School District.
With such a jam-packed day, guests are sure to need some tasty fuel to recharge in between activities. In the famous food vendor alley, chains such as Carrabba’s, Outback and UNOS will have a variety of selections from which to choose. A stand will have standard festival snacks available, and Goodnoe’s Ice Cream, a new vendor this year, will have frozen treats to help guests cool off.
If this wasn’t enough to keep attendees engaged, they can also expect to rubs elbows with a few celebrities. Former Flyer Bernie Parent will be making a special appearance, so those who wish to meet him are encouraged to bring a camera for photos as well as their own memorabilia for him to sign.
At 6 p.m., the township will become a “Disco Inferno” as legendary band The Trammps perform a free concert at 2400 Byberry Road. The quartet will cover all the classics like “That’s Where the Happy People Go,” “Zing Went the Strings of My Heart” and “Soul Searchin’ Time.” Their set will be followed by a fireworks display at 8:15 p.m. to officially close out the day.
Following tradition, the “Best of Bucks” community event will be hosted by the Township Council, Bensalem Community Affairs, Bensalem Parks & Recreation and, of course, Bensalem native Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo.
“I’m proud to call Bensalem my home. I’m also proud of its heritage,” DiGirolamo said. “While the landscape of the community is ever evolving, the core community is still a network of neighborhoods woven together to complete Bensalem Township.” ••
If you go…
The Bensalem Fall Festival will take place Saturday, Oct. 7 (rain date is Oct. 8), beginning at 11 a.m. at Bensalem’s Central Park at the township Municipal Complex. Admission is free except for food vendors and ticket purchases for rides. The Trammps concert takes place at 6 p.m. at 2400 Byberry Road. There is no onsite parking, but parking is available at Bensalem High School. Shuttles will run between the school and festival all day.