A cool Hot Diggity Dog Days

May 19, 2013
The band American Pie plays at Hot Diggity Dog Days in Canonsburg Sunday. - Brad Hundt / Observer-Reporter Order a Print

CANONSBURG – The 101st anniversary of a luminary’s birth almost never grabs the hoopla that greets the 100th, and things were a little bit cooler at this year’s Hot Diggity Dog Days festival in Canonsburg.

Launched last year to celebrate the centenary of hometown boy Perry Como’s birth on May 18, 1912, organizers acknowledged that attendance this year was lighter than in 2012. The absence of revived interest in Como was surely part of the reason, plus Hot Diggity Dog Days was up against the National Road Festival, with events in Scenery Hill, Washington and Claysville. Also, this year’s festival, named after Como’s hit “Hot Diggity (Dog Ziggity Boom),” did not have Adam Brock as a headliner; 12 months ago, Brock, a Washington resident, was fresh from his stint as a finalist on “American Idol.”

“This is a growing festival,” said Terry Hazlett, Canonsburg’s former borough manager and a member of the selection committee for America’s Pop Music Hall of Fame, which will be located in Canonsburg. “The people who are coming are really enjoying the oldies bands, and we hope to keep it growing.”

Patty Maurer, the coordinator of Hot Diggity Dog Days, said attendance this year was “not what I had hoped for,” but she noted she had heard positive feedback from both visitors and vendors “who want to do it again.”

“I expected attendance to be down,” she added. Maurer also raised the possibility that Hot Diggity Dog Days will be moved to another weekend next year.

Along with an assortment of rides and food, the festival featured appearances by the bands Deja Vu, Sugarcane, American Pie, Kardaz and J.J. Brickel and the Liberator.

Brad Hundt came to the Observer-Reporter in 1998 after stints at newspapers in Georgia and Michigan. Brad holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from George State University in Atlanta, Ga., and a master’s in popular culture studies from Bowling Green (Ohio) State University. He has covered the arts and entertainment for the O-R, and also worked as a municipal beat reporter. He now serves as editorial page editor.

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