By Jim Newell
LAKE ORION — The aroma of elephant ears and kettle corn wafting in the air, the screams of the young and old alike as the Pirates of the Seven Seas ship first ascends and then plunges, leaving that empty feeling in your stomach.
The ding of game bells and the “awes” of children as the gaze upon the cotton candy. Fireworks.
Ah, pure summer jubilation in downtown Lake Orion.
It’s that time of year when the carnival rolls into town for the Lake Orion Lions Club annual Jubilee fundraiser.
“We want everybody to come out, enjoy the carnival and have fun. There’s a lot to do for people of all ages,” said Lion Mike Pikelis, chair of the Jubilee. “This is one of our biggest fundraisers of the year that raises money for all of the things that we help out with throughout the year. We put a lot of money back into the community helping out those people who are in a jam or who are a little less fortunate.”
Like in previous years, the Skerbeck Entertainment Group will run the carnival rides and games from Thursday through Sunday.
The carnival is from 5-10 p.m. on Thursday, June 23, noon – 11 p.m. Friday, June 24 and Saturday, June 25 and noon – 6 p.m. Sunday, June 26.
Wristbands for rides
Purchase a single-day wrist band in advance for kids to enjoy rides. Wrist bands are available online at www.skerbeck.com for $30, or at the ticket booth. Wrist bands are good all day on Thursday, Friday and Sunday and from noon – 5 p.m. on Saturday.
The Lions Club will host its free fireworks show over Lake Orion, which begins at dusk, around 10 p.m., Saturday.
“Everybody come on down and check it out. It should be visible from the village and we’re hoping for good weather. “If it’s rained out, Sunday is the fireworks day.”
Broadway Street from Shadbolt Street to Front Street; and Flint Street from Anderson Street to Lapeer Street will be closed beginning June 22 for setup and will reopen the morning of June 27.
Parking lots on Anderson Street are also closed for rides and activities.
Lots are open on Slater Street, Shadbolt Street (behind 313 Pizza Bar), across from the Ehman Center and at the Lake Orion Community Schools Administration Building on Lapeer Street after business hours and on weekends.
Project Kidsight and future Leader Dogs
The Lions Club will have their Project Kidsight trailer at the carnival, with free vision screenings for children six-months-old and older from noon – 4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday at the west end of Flint Street.
“The schools accept the printout (from the vision screening), so that helps some people out if they can’t get to an optometrist,” Pikelis said.
From noon – 4 p.m. on Saturday families can also visit the pups at Leader Dogs for the Blind (near the Project Kidsight trailer) and learn more about the program, including how to volunteer to raise a pup, or donating.
Children’s Scavenger Hunt
There will be a scavenger hunt for kids ages 6-12 beginning at noon Saturday outside of Ed’s Broadway Gift and Costume on the corner of Flint and Broadway streets.
Kids can pick up their scavenger hunt cards and begin searching. The hunt will be within the boundaries of the carnival.
Everyone will meet at 2:30 p.m. at Cookies and Cream ice cream shop for prize drawings for those who complete the scavenger hunt.
“I’m not going to say what they are, but we have some pretty cool prizes this year,” Pikelis said. “Keep in mind it’s for 6- to 12-year-olds, so it’s not going to be too difficult.”
Canned food drive
From noon – 11 p.m. on Saturday the Lions Club will host a canned food drive (and nonperishable items) for Oxford/Orion FISH food pantry. Drop off donations at the beer tent on Anderson Street in the Children’s Park parking lot.
The beer and entertainment tent is back from 5-11 p.m. on Thursday with DJ Kevin Winn. The tent is open 4 p.m. – midnight Friday and Saturday with the band Full Tilt playing on Friday and Scotty Doesn’t Know on Saturday. All shows begin at 8 p.m. The beer tent is in the Children’s Park parking lot on Anderson Street.
Event sponsors for the Jubilee are The Lake Orion Review, JS Capitol Group LLC, Skerbeck Entertainment, Converting Alternatives International, Sagebrush Cantina and Waste Management.
By Jim Newell