Founders’ Day, the celebration of Marana’s 32nd birthday, really does have something for everyone this Saturday, March 21, with events centered upon Ora Mae Harn Park.
Kids can pet a farm animal and build a block structure. Teens can climb a wall, run against a bungee rope or look at cool cars. Adults can try traditional foods, visit vendors and listen to live music. There are rope jumpers and tractor pullers, young football and baseball players. Miss Pima County is paying a visit. Oh, and who doesn’t love a parade? It starts at 9 a.m.
“It’s an all-day-long thing,” said Adelina Martin, event and volunteer coordinator for the town of Marana. “There’s a lot of stuff going on for the whole family.”
In a new twist, about 35 vehicles from Marana and Mountain View high school students are being shown in a free “car show and shine.” Every year, about this time, Marana High School has a big vehicle show. “We thought, ‘why not try and help each other out?’” Martin said. Donations to the show, in front of the senior center, benefit school auto clubs.
A petting zoo, pony rides, inflatables and some “make and take crafts” are among the offerings for children. This year, the National Association of Women in Construction is sponsoring a Kids Block contest, with youngsters in grades 1-6 using building blocks to construct structures that’ll be judged at contest’s end.
A rock climbing wall, a bungee run, free “up-dos” and manicures from the Tucson College of Beauty, military information and a tethered hot-air balloon for rides ought to keep youth busy.
There’s youth baseball and softball action from the Marana and Continental Ranch Little Leagues, and the Marana Flag Football Super Bowl kicks off at 11:30 a.m.
The Marana Community Food Bank is bringing in its truck to receive donations. Founders’ Day is “a free event, but we’re asking people if they can bring food to donate. We’re going to try to fill the truck,” Martin said.
Martin expects about 60 vendors in booths around Ora Mae Harn Park.
Traditional native foods are part of this year’s heritage display.
Mayor Ed Honea holds an invitation-only heritage reception.
The winning entry in a Founders’ Day photo contest is gracing the front page of the official program.
The parade emcee is Carrie Moten of 93.7FM. Lauren Burgoyne of KOLD TV is handling the stage announcements. Live bands perform through the afternoon.
Parade, 9 a.m.
Park activities, 11 a.m. – Food and drink vendors, car show, entertainment, heritage display, “teen extreme” area.
Marana Flag Football Super Bowl, 11:30 a.m.
Tractor pull, Heritage Arena, Noon.
Little League Challenge first pitch, University of Arizona’s Adrienne Acton, noon.
The stage schedule
Mayor Ed Honea’s welcome, 11 a.m.
Miss Pima County Tanya Valladares, 11:15 a.m.
Rattlesnake Ridge rope jumpers, noon.
Los Bureaucrats live music, 1 p.m.
Endgame live music, 2 p.m.
Mariachi Brillante Juvenil live music, 3 p.m.
Last Minute Band live music, 4 p.m.