Family Night in the Park at Stallings Municipal Park brought crowds to the annual festival on Sept. 20. The day reminded me of the lyrics in the song “Lazy Day,” recorded by the 1960s band Spanky and the Gang: “Blue sky, sunshine, what a day to take a walk in the park.”
Bikes, strollers and walkers made their way to the park on a perfect Saturday afternoon. Cars were redirected to an overflow lot.
“We come every year,” said Betty Lathan, who was at the park with her great-nephew, Trent McAllister of Indian Trail. “Even when we lived in Charlotte, we came here.”
The local band Right Turn Clyde was set up on stage, while kids romped through the park trying out free rides provided by Pinnacle Amusements. There were rides called “Spinnerride” where children gleefully fly around in circles (makes an adult dizzy just thinking about it) and “Xtreme jump,” which seemed like a modified bungee jump. There was a 32-foot climbing wall for the more daring, as well as moon bounces and huge slides.
There were police cars and a fire truck. Boy Scout and Cub scout troops were on hand to help out.
Steve Layton, Scoutmaster for Troop 21 in the Stallings/Indian Trail area, said “We're doing whatever the town needs us to do.”
He took off his sunglasses to show me dark circles from lack of sleep, and he mentioned that the troop also had a camp-out over the weekend at Indian Trail United Methodist Church.
The Kevin Bigham family set up a booth for First Choice Eye Care (Stevens Mill Crossing Shopping Center) to distribute free eyeglass spray cleaners, cleaning cloths and bagged treats for kids. Candles-n-Stuff (at Idlewild Crossing) had a booth, along with other vendors.
The Stallings Parks and Recreation committee, which sponsors Family Night in the Park, had a booth and handled details of the day‘s event. The festival has grown steadily over the years.
Roy and Dana Rati of Stallings brought their 21/2-year- old son, Eric, to the festival for the first time.
Melissa Burroughs and her 17-month old son, Jack, relaxed on a park swing. Burroughs teaches music classes for kids in Indian Trail.
It truly was a lazy day full of blue sky and sunshine – perfect for a walk in the park.