Over the years, have you noticed that some of the annual festivities that go on in Baltimore have lost their touch? This could be due to lack of funding or lack of caring. The festival that I attended this past weekend is a perfect example of serious lacking. In my neighborhood in West Baltimore, there’s a festival that happens every year in Franklin Square park which is located in the between West Lexington and West Fayette street off of South Carey Street. I have been going to this festival since I was a child and it was well worth attending the two weekend days that it occurred on. There were marching bands, face painting, pottery, food, and many performances. This was from the late 90’s to the early 00’s. The park would be filled with many familiar neighborhood faces, a lot of them, unfortunately, are no longer with us, and many families. So what happened as the years progressed? Why did such an abundant festival deteriorate? Well in 2011, Maryland Delegate Ruth M. Kirk, who is well known in West Baltimore’s 44th district, died . She was heavily involved with organizing the festival every year but, since she died, I noticed that more and more was taken from it. The vendors lessened and the entertainment lessened to the point where I only come to get food and go. Her family has been keeping the festival alive since then although it seems as if many have pulled out of the annual event.
I recall one year that I attended the festival and there were animals so, to go from that to absolutely nothing is just hard to witness. This was something the community looked forward to every year and, sadly it’s on its last limbs. The park used to be filled with vendors who wrapped around the whole park and now there are barely enough vendors to fill up one side of the park. Seeing that made me wonder, what is really the underlying culprit to the lack of funding to not only this festival but, other festivities we are used to every year that is slowly disappearing? As the things we are used to enjoying disappear, crime continues to rise and it seems as if we have nothing to look forward to but coffins. Please bring back funding for our local festivals and events!