Hearty beans for the hungry masses

Messenger photos by Dedra Cordle
On June 24, people from across the county came out to Westgate Park to experience one of the oldest festivals in the area: The Historic Hilltop Bean Dinner. Over the course of the seven-hour festival, the youngest attendees were able to burn off some energy from the dozen bounce houses that were made available to the public while individuals of all ages were able to enjoy live music and entertainment, learn about the history of the westside through informational booths and reenactments, and, of course, devour all of the bean soup and cornbread that their bellies could stand. Shown here helping to prepare a batch of that bean soup is local resident Rosa Dunn. Festival organizers estimate that a ton of beans are used to make the hearty soup for the hungry masses.
Volunteers Gary Kinser (left) and Rick Erbe were in charge of washing the bean pans. Erbe joked that they have been “trying to get fired” for the last couple years but the organizers will not let them go.
Hudson Gourley, 9, is all smiles despite the fact that the hotdog bun packages were wobbling in his arms. His father, Chris Gourley, is one of the festival organizers and recruited his children to provide backup assistance with the meal preparation.
Musician Shawn Avery entertained the morning crowd with country songs.
Jacob Leatherwood, 5, concentrates as he maneuvers through inflatable obstacles.
Columbus Police therapy canine Maverick gets a bit of love from Sara Carter, 9.
West High School Alumni Association member Eli Bowen has a bit of fun with the cowboy cutout on display. Bowen is a 1974 graduate of the westside school.
The car show, which featured more than 50 vintage and modern vehicles, attracted a large crowd.


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