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Radcliff Days puts fun on display

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By Marty Finley

Radcliff reveled in fun Saturday as it launched Radcliff Days, which turned Freedoms Way into a cornucopia of festival offerings.

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Children playfully toppled in the Fun Derby bounce house while others tested their strength with a hammer to win a prize.

Between the games, food and music, it gave a diverse plate for visitors to taste. Bluesy folk rockers Mamakitty Southwood performed an acoustic set in front of Colvin Community Center as arts and crafts vendors offered their wares inside.

Austin Jackson, 11, jumped at the chance to sit in a police cruiser, joining Hardin County Sheriff’s Deputy Bud Baumgardner as he showed Jackson the bells and whistles of the car and allowed him to play with certain elements, including the radio.

“I won’t take you to jail, but I will give you a sticker,” Baumgardner told one of the children who jumped in the car for a look around.

Austin’s mother, Angela, said they were heading to the bank when they noticed the commotion and joined in to take a closer look. Angela Jackson said her children had thoroughly taken advantage of the free games.

By noon, the family had extensively toured the festival, which spilled over from Colvin Community Center and the Radcliff Police Station to Radcliff City Hall.

Meanwhile, 4-year-old Brooklynn Williams was mesmerized by a military vehicle sitting on the lot.

“We’ve been to the tank three times,” said Jennifer Williams, Brooklynn’s mother.

Jennifer and her husband, Richard, had sampled most of the day’s activities by early afternoon and let Brooklynn indulge in another treat — face painting.

“She really liked that,” Jennifer Williams said.

Nearby, a safety demonstration was giving onlookers a jolt.

Louisville Gas & Electric and Kentucky Utilities had built its own “minicity” at Radcliff Days to demonstrate the dangers of electrical hazards, with the small simulated city full of downed power lines.

To add to the effect, miniature figurines were arranged in the city to represent residents, who were electrocuted as part of the demonstration.

Demonstrator Joseph Cranmer said Saturday’s display was condensed, but the full demonstration is a free service conducted for schools or other organizations that request it.

In addition to the threat of downed power lines, the demonstration explains the process of electricity and shines light on safety hazards around the home, Cranmer said.

Food also was a centerpiece of the festival, with one vendor touting wings and jumbo hot dogs as a selling point.

DC Foods “Wings and Things” is based in Radcliff and has participated in city events in the past. Their food also has been featured at Vine Grove Autumn Daze and Thunder over Louisville, said Tina Miller.

But Miller said DC Foods is primarily sought after for its fish, which will be returning to the menu at next year’s festival.

“We’re known for our fish and chicken,” Miller said.

The festival was launched as one of the initiatives by Mayor J.J. Duvall as he promised to return community spirit to the city and reinstate a city parade to prominence.

Marty Finley can be reached at (270) 505-1762 or mfinley@thenewsenterprise.com.