Monson Summerfest Blown Away by Tornadoes - NECN

Monson Summerfest Blown Away by Tornadoes



    (NECN: Brian Burnell, Monson, Mass.) - Last month's tornadoes are still being felt in Massachusetts.

    Several towns had to cancel Independence Day celebrations because of the devastation left behind by the storms.

    Back on June first when the tornado ripped through Monson, and in the days following, people NECN talked to said, "Wait until July fourth. It's Monson Fest. Come back and you'll see what this town is really made of." Unfortunately Monson Fest, too, was blown away.

    Since 1979, July fourth in Monson has been a celebration. Main street closed, vendors lining the sidewalks, a parade, rides, music... a celebration of community pride. But, 2011 is the year of the tornado. The storm that blew through here on June first, ravaging the town, can claim the summer fest as one of its victims. No festival this year.

    Becky Cordner, Monson, MA: "I'm very disappointed its not happening.  We really thought it was going to. Why do you think it would have been a good idea to do it?  Well, I though it was going to be a good idea to do it because of everything that happened, you know. To get it off of everybody's minds. The tragedies and all of that. To be able to come together as a little community and do it."

    Steve Hutchinson, Monson, MA: "I personally think having summerfest actually would have been a great way to keep people happy. Maybe up the morale of a lot of people who lost their homes. Stuff like that."

    Amid the disappointment is understanding. Beverly Coon lived here for eight years.

    Beverly Coon, Longmeadow, MA: "It's still devastating, devalstating, to see what has happened. And in that respect you think they made the right choice to cancel Monson fest this year. Yes, I do. Money-wise I think it was smart of them to cancel."

    No question people were looking forward to it. Newcomer Gail Davis had heard about the festival before she moved to Monson on.

    Gail Davis, Monson, MA: "June first. The day of the tornado we moved in. Wow. And you had heard about Monson fest.  Yes.  And were looking forward to it. Absolutely. Kind of understand, though? Absolutely. Next year. Next year maybe we'll enjoy it that much more."

    You could look at this as delayed, not destroyed. September third they're going to hold Summer fest with fireworks. That's when Monson will show its true colors.