CORNING, N.Y. (18 NEWS) - Corning's GlassFest, a festival celebrating Corning's glassmaking industry is kicking off its 9th year on Thursday May 24th. The four-day festival will feature family friendly activities, artist vendors, food, and live music. The event begins with a Glass Ribbon cutting at 5:30pm at the Corning Museum of Glass.
The Corning GlassFest began 10 years ago with a partnership between the Corning Museum of Glass and Corning’s Gaffer District. A week-long event had been held to celebrate a visit to Corning by the Glass Arts Society, an International arts group. The event was held in Downtown Corning and was a great success. With the ending of the LPGA Corning Classic local leaders were seeking an event to replace it, this led to The Corning Museum of Glass requesting that the Gaffer District create a local glass festival celebrating the history and future of glass on Market Street.
What started as a regional event in its early years, slowly grew to draw visitors from around the country and even the world. Early GlassFests showcased local artists, displays of local businesses, glassmaking demonstrations, food, and live music. In the beginning the festival went from Thursday to Saturday, with concerts on Friday and Saturday night. After several years the event promoters began looking for a way to extend the festival to Sunday. From this drive came GlassFest’s annual Memorial Day Tribute on the final Sunday of the event. Special activities honoring Veterans are held throughout the day.
This year’s GlassFest will feature Outdoor Hot Glass demos, a MASTERPIX Fine Glass Prints Scavenger Hunt at local businesses, various street exhibits, artists, and vendors that will fill Market Street, Centerway Square, and Centennial Park. This year will also see the return of the Kid’s Zone, a very popular attraction from previous years.
The Rock the Park concert series presented by Simmons-Rockwell Auto Dealerships will feature classic rock band DSB: Detour performing 80’s hits on Friday night. Saturday night DSB “the #1 Journey Tribute Show,” will perform. A fireworks show will follow the concert in Riverfront Centennial Park.
Sunday May 27th will feature GlassFest’s annual Memorial Day tribute to our nation’s veterans. Twin Tiers Idol winner Quentin Harriger will open the concert at Noon. Ayla Brown, a former NCAA basketball player and contestant on American Idol Season 5 will be performing at 1pm featuring former Elmira Jackal Rob Bellamy. A special performance by Former Marine turned country singer, Tony Jackson will start at 3pm on the stage in Riverfront Centennial Park.
Local Veterans organizations have partnered with GlassFest for a 21-gun salute and honor guard as well as a special Memorial Day surprise scheduled for Sunday afternoon.
In addition, the GlassFest 8k Race takes place on Saturday May 26th at 8am in the Corning War Memorial Stadium. The race in partnership with the Wineglass Marathon, draws participants from across the U.S. Canada, and around the world.
For more information visit http://www.gafferdistrict.com/glassfest.