James Rada, Jr.
(11/20) This year’s Colorfest broke a
three-year string of the town losing money on
the weekend festival.
According to preliminary figures from the
Town of Thurmont, the profit from this year’s
Colorfest was $13,154, a figure that more than
offsets the town’s losses during 2005-2007.
The two big changes this year were an
additional $2 parking fee per car; and the
Thurmont Police Department issued parking
“Without tickets and parking, we would have
been in the red and this was a good year,”
Mayor Martin Burns said during a citizen
meeting to begin dissecting what went wrong
and what went right with this year’s Colorfest.
More than two dozen people showed up at the
town office on Nov. 12 to talk about the
annual festival. Though the increased parking
fee brought nearly $6,000 more for the town,
it was also the most contentious issue.
Burns said that the commissioners
instituted the fee because they didn’t want
residents paying for the festival through
their tax dollars but rather wanted to spread
the cost among the people who come into town
“After looking at these figures, I would
never vote to change it,” said Commissioner
Ron Terpko. “We hit the nail on the head with
this system. It’s good.”
He pointed out that despite the complaints
about the parking fee, Colorfest cost a family
of four only $10 (for parking) while the
Christmas festival in Frederick would cost the
same family of four $32 (for parking and
Some of the non-profit organizations like
the Thurmont Ambulance Company said that
Colorfest was their biggest fundraiser of the
year and were appreciative of the festival.
Jack Newkirk, principal of Catoctin High
School, pointed out that with the new $2 fee,
by charging the new parking rate of $10, the
school made $3 more per car.
“We raised more money than we ever had
parking,” Newkirk said.
The commissioners plan to hold additional
meetings to evaluate Colorfest and decide what
changes, if any, need to be made for next