Street fest firing on all cylinders

Photo courtesy St. Anthony Fire Department


ST. ANTHONY — The end of summer is already in sight but organizers of this weekend’s 29th annual St. Anthony Street Fest are ensuring it will be filled with hot rods, cool tunes, tasty food and new games for young and old.

This weekend’s 29th annual Street Fest, anchored by its popular car show, plays out Saturday in and around the St. Anthony Community Center at State Road 64 and Cross Street.

For the 23rd year, the festival will kick off with the Show & Shine Car, Truck & Motorcycle Show. Registration starts at 9 a.m. and winners are announced at 3 p.m.

New kid games include kickball (at the softball field for grades K-4 and 5-8) and a Firefighter Challenge. There’s also a kiddie tractor pull, an adult tractor pull featuring a pedal device that St. Anthony Volunteer Fire Department Chief Scott Uebelhor promises is sized for a normal adult and, for teens, a new Selfie Scavenger Hunt.

Uebelhor says the street fest is hitting on all cylinders going into the weekend. For example, 15 teams have signed up to cook, grill and smoke some fantastic chili, food and appetizers during the Backyard BBQ Contest. Those teams fire up grills and smokers around 3 a.m., Uebelhor says. Tasting — the best part for festgoers — takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

There will be a beer garden — it opens at 3 p.m. this year — and fried chicken dinners will feature the golden bird, potato wedges, baked beans and a little treat called threshing-machine tomatoes, which is a spiced salad of tomatoes and various peppers, all diced together. Uebelhor adds that a full concession stand will be open all day “with cold drinks and great sandwiches.”

The High Road performs on the main stage at 6 p.m. followed by Studebaker from 8 to 10:30 p.m. Boogie Tunes will pump the jams before and after those bands’ sets.

Uebelhor says the street fest pulls the community together. It’s not just firefighters hauling tables, setting up, working concessions and preparing food.

“It’s a true community effort,” he says.

The street fest is the fire department’s lone fundraiser each year and proceeds from it and its raffle allow the fire department to improve.

St. Anthony’s firefighters are in the process of replacing self-contained breathing apparatus units that run $5,500 each. The department’s sets of turnout gear — helmet, coat, pants, boots and gloves — cost about $3,000 each and there are too many that are 18 years old and in need of replacement due to advances in protection technology, according to Uebelhor.

Thankfully, according to Uebelhor, festgoers who buy raffle tickets and businesses who donate prizes continue to be very generous.

Stage sponsors this year are St. Anthony Tire and Classic Bulk Carriers. Entertainment sponsors include Jasper Engines & Transmissions, MasterBrand, Best Home Furnishings, Old National Bank, Jasper Group, Circle A/Ackerman Oil, Jaminczky Contracting, Klem Graphics and Arnie’s Tavern.

Before the inaugural street fest in 1991, the fire department was relegated to fundraising through fish fries, dinners and shooting matches. The daylong festival with something for every age group has replaced the dink-and-dunk fundraising efforts.

St. Anthony Street Fest


7 to 9:30 a.m. Breakfast sandwiches on sale

9 a.m. Registration for Show & Shine Car, Truck & Motorcycle show open; concession stand opens

11 a.m. Chili and Backyard BBQ Contest Tasting ($5 bracelet); fried chicken, burgers and more available; cornhole tournament sign-ups

Noon Cornhole tourney begins; car show registration closes, judging begins

2 p.m. Firefighter challenge for grades K-4 (inside tennis courts)

3 p.m. Beer garden opens; car show awards announced

4 p.m. Fried chicken dinners (with chicken, taters, beans, thresher tomatoes served inside community center)

4 to 6 p.m. Boogie Tunes

4:30 p.m. Backyard BBQ awards announced on stage

5 p.m. Kiddie tractor pull sign-ups start; Dubois County Cloggers perform

5:30 p.m. Kiddie tractor pull begins; Kids games open (inside tennis courts); Kickball at the softball field for grades K-4 and 5-8

6 to 8 p.m. The High Road

7 p.m. Adult pedal tractor pull

7:30 p.m. Selfie Scavenger Hunt for grades 9-12

8 to 10:30 p.m. Studebaker

9 p.m. Grand raffle drawing inside community center (tickets on sale all day)

10:30 p.m. Boogie Tunes cranks it up

12:30 a.m. Last beer sale

1 a.m. Lights out

Note: The Firemen’s Fest takes place in and around the St. Anthony Community Center, 4465 S. Cross St.

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