Cranbury’s Main Street will once again fill with residents, businesses and games for a day centered around community when Cranbury Day arrives on Sept. 11.
In 2021, Cranbury Day returns downtown after having been canceled in 2020 for safety and health concerns in addition to the social distancing restrictions due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
This year’s event from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. falls on Sept. 11, and there is a service planned to start the day to honor and remember those who lost their lives during the Sept. 11 attacks of 2001.
The remembrance service planned by the Cranbury Business Association, the organization that plans Cranbury Day, includes an honor guard, the national anthem, which will be performed by Danielle Illario, and “Taps.”
“That is going to start our day, so we can truly honor the day,” said Christine Thompson, who has spearheaded the planning of Cranbury Day alongside Julianna Lako. “The remembrance service will be at about 9:30 a.m.”
Cranbury Day in 2021 is going to be very similar to what the day has been in the past. The event is slightly scaled down from the last time it was conducted in 2019.
“We have about 65 vendors – that includes vendors that sell their items and food vendors, we will have pony rides and helicopter rides, a magician show in the afternoon, face painting, and a musician that will play for the kids,” Thompson said. “I feel like in the past two years we have a lot of new people in town and I think this event is extremely important to bring the town together, especially since what we have been through with all the flooding.”
The Cranbury Lions Club Annual Duck Race will also return, and so too will the Mummers Parade.
The Mummers are believed to be the oldest folk festival parade in the United States. Dressed in elaborate garb, the group is known for its annual New Year’s Day Parade in Philadelphia. With a mixture of cultures from Swedish, Irish, English, Finnish, European and German backgrounds, the Mummers are set to once again march down Main Street to help kick off the day.
Businesses, non-profits and civic organizations will be among the 65 vendors on Main Street in downtown for what will be Cranbury’s 43rd annual Cranbury Day.
“It is fun-filled family activity kind of day. I think there are people who are excited to show their new types of small business,” Lako said. “Cranbury Day returning gave everyone something to look forward to. Going through the COVID-19 pandemic last year there was nothing to look forward to and be excited about. You can tell the town is excited we are bringing it back this year.”
Live music is going to be preformed throughout the day by Ed Goldberg and Odessa Klezmer Band, Tone Rangers, After Hours and Lenox Underground.
T-shirts were designed by Lako. On the back of the shirts there is a message “It’s A Small Town Thing.”
“I hope people takeaway a sense of community from Cranbury Day. It is our big small town thing,” Lako said.