---- — About 40 Fairy Spring fans braved the cold and early morning hours to participate in the Early Bird Splash at 7 a.m. July 24
The event was the first of a series of events sponsored by Friends of the Parks to help celebrate the park’s 75th year in operation. Swimmers were treated to an early morning swim, an impromptu doggy paddle race, Stagecoach coffee and hot chocolate, muffins and mugs to commemorate the event.
While not everyone there took the plunge, others came to take in the park’s early morning setting.
Participants ranged in age from 6 to 76 and came from as far as Canada, Chile, and Alabama, as well as Cooperstown and Middlefield.
“People arrived by rowing skull, foot, bike and car, which shows the many ways the community uses Fairy Springs as a destination,” said event organizer and Friends of the Parks member Susie Knight in a media release.
The park, which normally operates between the hours of 10 a.m. and dusk, was opened and staffed early with lifeguards especially for the event.
The group will host a community birthday celebration for the park from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 4. Guests will be treated to an evening of lanterns, lake views, music, cake, ice cream and lemonade as well as a champagne toast for adults.
Participants will also partake in a community photograph and have the opportunity to share stories and memories of the park with former lifeguards and caretakers in attendance.
Local painter, Fairy Spring regular and Friends of the Park board member,May Britt Joyce has created a painting of Fairy Spring to honor the occasion. She has agreed to auction the painting the night of the party. Prints of the painting will also be available for sale.
A third event to honor the park will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday Aug. 21. Cooperstown kindergarten teacher Lisa Lippitt will host a story hour featuring a reading of “Fairy Boats” by Tracy Kane.
Those interested in helping out with the celebration or finding out more about upcoming Friends of the Park events may contact Knight at 547-8333 or visit Friends of the Parks on Facebook.