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Free Pools, Free Parking, Fireworks at Saturday’s Lansdale Founders Day

Tony Di Domizio

Friday, August 22, 2014 • 2:47pm

Those who say there’s nothing to do in Lansdale should be sure to visit the borough Saturday and eat their words.

And park for free.

And swim for free.

And check out the Festival of the Arts.

And visit the farmers’ market and stay for the family fun festival.

And bring a comfy blanket for those fireworks.

Lansdale celebrates its history with the annual Founders Day event all day and night, culminating with fireworks from Memorial Park. The best seats in the house – the field at Penndale Middle School.

This year’s theme is “A Town That’s Hot,” which references not only Lansdale’s progress toward revitalization, but also the 125th Anniversary of Fairmount Fire Co.

The party really begins Friday night, when a diesel engine from the New Hope and Ivyland Railroad and Pennsylvania Northeastern Railroad will arrive in town for photo opportunities at 9.

That diesel engine will be part of what may be the biggest draw of Founders Day – Excursion train rides from Lansdale to Souderton and back, from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Six round trips are scheduled to depart from Lansdale at 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 2 p.m., 3:30 p.m., 5 p.m., and 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 or $30 per rider, with children under age 2 free, and additional tickets at $10. Families can purchase four tickets for $60.

Purchase tickets at the Lansdale Parks and Recreation Building in Lansdale or at Henning’s Trains, 128 S. Line St., Lansdale.  Online sales are at www.NewHopeRailroad.com.

Discover Lansdale presents the event, beginning at 10 a.m. The Lansdale Parking Authority has already approved free parking for the day.  

Founders Day coincides with the Festival of the Arts in Memorial Park, which also begins at 10 a.m. In the park, featuring the music of the Walnut Street Chamber Trio from 10 a.m. to noon, and The Eric Mintel Jazz Quartet from noon to 4 p.m.

The American Heart Association HeartChase event kicks off prior to Founders Day, with registration at 8 a.m. in Railroad Plaza. The HeartChase scavenger hunt event then runs 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. in downtown Lansdale.

The Lansdale Farmers’ Market will also be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. along Railroad Avenue and Century Plaza lot.

At 10:45 a.m., Discover Lansdale will present the third annual Lifetime Achievement Award in posthumous fashion to former Montgomery County Concert Band co-founder and director Stephen Frederick, who was also a former administrator and teacher in the North Penn School District.

Even if the forecast is a comfortable 77 degrees, the swimming pools at Fourth Street and White’s Road will be open to the public. Swim for free from noon to 7 p.m.

As construction on the new police station continues, the current Lansdale Police Station, adjacent to the construction, is open for tours from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The Lansdale Historical Society will hold an open house at the Jenkins Farmstead from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. On hand at the open house – copies of its publication “Back in Time.” The booklet compiles historic stories and background information on notable North Penn people, events and locations. The cost is $10 each and it can be also be purchased at the historical society’s table near Railroad Plaza.

Fairmount Fire Co. will do a firefighter water battle – where techniques and procedures are tested in competitive fashion – from noon to 2:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, inside Fairmount Fire Co., North Penn O-Gaugers train displays will be setup from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A health expo will run from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Susquehanna Avenue.

Return to the Century Plaza lot at 2:30 p.m. for a Family Fun Festival, through 7:30 p.m.  

At 3 p.m., the Friends of the Lansdale Library will dedicate a memorial garden to late library employee Lois Weber outside the library.

From 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., a beer tasting takes place inside Lansdale Library. Get your tickets at the library.

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