By MATT LINDSEY
OGDENSBURG -- The 38th annual Ogdensburg Boys and Girls Club Expo, which kicked off Friday night, continues through Sunday with boats, “Club Idol,” vendors, live entertainment and a new inflatable obstacle course for kids .
“We anticipate eight to ten thousand people throughout the weekend…but all that hinges on the weather,” said Tom Luckie, club executive director.
The expo will run until 8 p.m. March 22 and from noon to 4:30 p.m. on March 23 at the E.A. Newell Golden Dome, 1100 State St.
“The event typically raises 120 to 130 thousand dollars which we use towards operating costs at the boys and girls club,” Luckie said. It takes around $354,000 annually to operate the club.”
In addition to dozens of exhibits and displays of boats, autos, trucks, local businesses and crafters, an inflatable obstacle course will be offered at the carnival portion of the expo that also includes several games and activities designed for children.
The popular “Club Idol” will once again take place, where the public is welcome to get on stage and perform karaoke in front of judges. The finals will take place on Sunday.
Several North Country musicians will be on hand to keep visitors entertained. Those expected to take the stage over the weekend include Barb Heller, Pat Duffy, Jack Kelly’s Little Big Band, Starlights as well as many youth performances.
A live auction is scheduled for Sunday and will include round-trip tickets to Boston, tickets for four to a New Yankees game and tickets for an ACC game featuring the Syracuse Orangemen among other prizes.
Raffle tickets will be sold with a grand prize of $5,000. Tickets cost $10 each.
True to tradition, this year will again include many vehicles including RVs, boats and trucks for spectators to view and talk about with sales professionals.
Those looking for a bargain or something unique should be sure to check out the gym filled with crafters and vendors offering their wares for sale.
Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center will be on hand once again for a health fair to offer free health screenings and information.
The club will honor staff and businesses during the opening ceremony on Friday at 3:30 p.m. who have spent countless hours helping with the expo. Those to be recognized for their hard work and impact on the expo include Peg LaVigne, Hannah Monnet, Nancy Seely and Blevins Auto. Hundreds of volunteers help make the event possible.
Dance recitals, merchant displays and concessions will round out expo activities.
“It’s a great way to support programs for kids and for families to have a great time and support locally…and the expo is a sign that spring is right around the corner,” Luckie said.
Admission to the expo will be $4 with proceeds to benefit the Boys and Girls Club.