ESCANABA - The Escanaba Noon Kiwanis Home & Garden Show and Pancake Days is Friday through Sunday. The event will be held at the Ruth Butler Exhibition Building at the U.P. State Fairgrounds.
Hours for the show and pancake feed are Friday from 5 to 9 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Parking and entry to the show are free. The tickets to the pancake feed are $5 for adults and $3 for children age 6-12. Children under 6 eat free.
"This is our fundraiser and every penny goes back into the community. We don't keep a penny of it," says Mary Beth Miller, chairperson of the show.
More than 50 years ago, the Escanaba Noon Kiwanis started Pancake Days. "Aunt Jemima actually came and trained them how to flip a proper pancake, and it had to be golden brown with that little dot in the center," explains Miller. "If it didn't have that, you were demoted to sausage."
Approximately 25 years ago, the Kiwanis added the Home & Garden Show to the Pancake Days. The annual event now draws more than 60 vendors promoting a variety of home and garden products and services. "You can come in, eat the pancakes - of course that helps our fundraiser - and then just make the rounds," she said.
According to Miller, the most difficult problem in the past was the hours for the Home & Garden Show and the hours when pancakes were served were not the same. This year, the pancakes will start and end at the same time as the Home & Garden Show.
Entertainment has not been a regular part of the Home & Garden Show in recent years. In the past, singing and organ music were a part of the event.
"The Kiwanians used to sing, because we're known as a singing club, when they did the pancakes," says Miller. This year's Home & Garden Show will will feature entertainment from local ensembles and a karaoke competition.
The karaoke competition is sponsored by the Escanaba Key Club, with the assistance of the Noon Kiwanis. Prizes will be awarded for first, second, and third place in each age group. Singers under 18 will sing on Saturday between noon and 3 p.m., and adults will sing from 3-6 p.m. If you are interested in registering early, contact Kathy Bloniarz at (906) 466-0319.
A children's bounce house will also be available at the show. "If parents have kids there, give them a little break, go jump in there for awhile," suggests Miller.
Depending on the weather, the Home & Garden Show and Pancake Days can draw between 3,000 and 6,000 attendees. "It could be 8,000 on a good weekend," says Miller.
For more information about the Home & Garden Show and Pancake Days contact Miller at (906) 789-0900.