By M.B. “The Wagonmaster” and Karen “The Cookie Lady” Wilson…

When I first started planning trips, I would call CAA for books about our planned destination and then call or write the local tourist board for more information. I would usually do this about two months or more in advance.

42-5_avon_heritage_duct_tape_festival_01Today, to learn about a destination simply visit the Internet and everything is at your fingertips. There is no better way to find information about a destination. The economy today has dictated how far we travel and the internet provides us with a wealth of places to visit.

Karen likes to surf the Internet and find interesting destinations to visit or shop. Recently, she found out about the Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival in Avon, Ohio, which was held June 14-16. The Festival honors father’s favorite fix-all adhesive and the event is always held on Father’s Day weekend. The Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival celebrates duct tape with fashions, crafts, sculptures, a parade and many more activities. This year marked the 10th annual festival and has attracted half-a-million duct tape enthusiasts from across North America since its inception in 2004.

Now, who goes to a duct tape festival? The only way to find out is to go to Avon. We went on the Internet, printed out some maps, put the address in our GPS, loaded everything up and we were off. In less than 250 miles, we arrived in Avon. The festival is held over the entire weekend and welcomes duct tape enthusiasts to the “Duct Tape Capital of the World” and home of the Duck brand of duct tape.

42-5_avon_heritage_duct_tape_festival_03For its 10th anniversary, the festival paid homage to the evolution of duct tape since its invention in the 1940s with a “Decades of Duct Tape” theme. Originally conceived to help soldiers waterproof ammunition cases and make repairs in the field during World War II, the product has evolved to become an essential repair tool, a crafting medium, and so much more.

When we arrived, there was free parking and free admission. For those driving larger RVs, we suggest leaving it at the campground and use your tow vehicle (or second vehicle) to drive to the festival grounds. Walking through the event, we couldn’t get over all of the several duct tape sculptures and all of the man hours spent on making these creations. Attendees could also take part in a scavenger hunt or enjoy the “ductivities” – an arts and crafts tent where attendees can express creativity.

42-5_avon_heritage_duct_tape_festival_05On Saturday, we arrived early (and suggest you do the same) as the parking lot filled up very quickly. The Duct Tape Festival Parade was a popular part of the event and featured duct tape floats, marching bands, and much more. The parade is a little under two hours, so it’s a good idea to bring lawn chairs. This year, the parade hit the runway at 2:00 p.m. with a sticky Project Runway Fashion Show (featuring many great duct tape fashions) followed by a Public Fashion Show on the main stage. It was a very interesting afternoon as we saw many of the people wearing their homemade fashions throughout the grounds.

There were also several vendors selling all kinds of duct-tape inspired merchandise and at the far end of the grounds were carnival rides and even more sculptures. We found that Friday evening was not too busy and a good day to check out all of the attractions However, on Saturday, it became very busy following the parade. If you want to see the whole parade, sit outside the grounds on the main street for the best view.

The Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival takes place at Veterans Memorial Park, 37001 Detroit Road, Avon, Ohio every year. We had a very fun time even though we had to leave Saturday evening and missed the final day on Sunday. I guess we will have to make another trip back to Avon in the near future and catch all that Sunday has to offer.


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