Casey Croucher/Recorder Staff
Barbara Schuck, left, paints Keira Kwak's face as Marilyn Sawyer watches, right, during Saturday's Hagaman Volunteer Fire Department Music Festival.
By CASEY CROUCHER
HAGAMAN-- “Music is my passion, that’s why I really wanted to start this festival up originally,” firefighter Robert Hassenfuss said Saturday during the 6th annual Hagaman Volunteer Fire Department Music Festival.
“I had the idea years ago to start having a music fest here in the village,” he said. “It took about two years for the department to go for the idea.”
The festival featured local bands and performers including Laurie Travis, Anything Goes, Hairband Riot, Nuthin Fancy and headliner Max Violet.
Along with music, guests got a variety of homemade chili, hot dogs, hamburgers and fried dough.
There were vendors selling homemade kettle corn, slushies, cotton candy, jewelry and raffle tickets for a variety of items including a kayak.
There was a bounce house for children and a beer tent for adults.
“There’s a little something for everyone here,” Hassenfuss said.
All of the money raised during Saturday’s event goes toward the fire department and residents are happy to help out.
“I try to come to this event every year,” jewelry vendor Sandra DiMarco said. “This festival brings people together, there’s good music, a great environment and it’s for a great cause. It just feels nice supporting a great organization.”
Cranesvile volunteer firefighter Marilyn Sawyer said she always hopes she’s on duty every year for the festival since Cranesville’s fire department helps Hagaman’s.
“My favorite part of this festival is being able to mingle with all the folks,” Sawyer said. “I just love to see the people and talk to them.”
U.S. Rep. Paul Tonko, D-Amsterdam, said he always comes to Hagaman’s music fest and he loves seeing “the community come together.”
“Seeing everyone here, having a great time, helping to raise money for fire services, it’s just impressive and heart-warming,” Tonko said. “What the fire department does is a priceless gift for the community and I think the community respects what they do and celebrate with them during this festival.”
Before Saturday’s festival commenced, the fire department also sponsored a motorcycle benefit ride to raise money for the first Leatherstocking Honor Flight in September.
Motorcyclists rode up Midline Road to Route 30 and went around the lake taking a break in Speculator then came back to Hagaman for the festival where they got a meal included with their benefit ride ticket.
David Davis, New York State Director of American Legion Riders and Director of Broadalbin’s American Legion Post #337, said roughly 35 riders signed up for Saturday’s cruise raising over $600 for September’s honor flight.
“It was an excellent say,” Davis said. “It wasn’t too hot, there wasn’t any rain and it was just all-around enjoyable. Now we get to have a meal and listen to some music.”
Hassenfuss said his goal when creating the music festival was to “bring the village together.”
“This festival brings the old and the young together,” he said. “This is just a great way to see everyone out and about. Even though this is a small community, this is the only time we see some people out and I really have a great time.”