61st Coal Show under way in Carmichaels

August 17, 2014
From left, volunteer firemen Jordan Burless and Mike Riggen hang a King Coal Show banner on Route 88 in Carmichaels. - Tara Kinsell / Observer-Reporter Order a Print

CARMICHAELS – The 61st annual King Coal Show got under way Saturday with its annual Sara Ruth memorial golf outing and the all new King Coal 5K run/walk.

A 2014 Pennsylvania Bituminous Coal Queen was selected Sunday from a pool of 11 young ladies representing high schools in Greene, Fayette and Washington counties and Monongalia County in West Virginia.

The pageant at the State Theater in Uniontown concluded too late for it to be included in today’s edition.

The remainder of the events for the week will begin at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the Carmichaels Area High School football field with the Pennsylvania State First Aid Contest.

The carnival, with announcer and DJ Dave Plavi, will run from 7 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Friday with extended hours Saturday from 5 to 11 p.m.

The annual King Coal Baby Prince and Princess Contest entries will be accepted at the Carmichaels fire hall from 6 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, when the winners will be announced.

The Pennsylvania Bituminous Safety Association mine rescue and benchman contests will be held at 8 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday, respectively, at the football field. There is no cost for these events.

Mike Riggen, president of King Coal Association, is hoping for a successful show despite what is happening to the economy. “We are going to go with what we have,” he said. “I am disappointed with Emerald shutting down and what happened to Hatfield’s Ferry,” he said. “But we are honoring coal as our main industry. That’s why we are here.”

Riggen did say this year’s show has an improved carnival and the parades are always a big draw.

The annual children’s pet and bicycle parades will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday. Line-up for the parades begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Yoskovich Funeral Home parking lot.

Friday evening a performance by the Hit and Run band will take place on the grounds of the fire hall from 7 to 10 p.m. Also, beginning at 7 p.m. Friday there will be a coal information presentation inside the fire hall given by the Coal and Coke Heritage Center from Penn State Fayette. Beginning at 8:15 p.m. Friday there will be a free screening of the “Bituminous Coal Queens of Pennsylvania” inside the fire hall.

Saturday’s events will begin at 10 a.m. with the King Coal Charles Workman Memorial Auto/Motorcycle Show at Wana B Park and the Michael Auto Tractor Show at Michaels Auto. The King Coal Charles Workman Auto/Motorcycle Parade will start at 3:50 p.m., followed at 4 p.m. by the 61st annual King Coal Show Parade. Winning parade units will be announced by Plavi on the fire hall grounds throughout the evening.

Exhibits will be on display inside the fire hall throughout the week from 6 to 10 p.m., including a collection from Brice and Linda Rush and one from the family of John “Roof Tar” McCann in his memory.

Tara Kinsell started her career in journalism with the National Geographic Insider Magazine and the Gaithersburg Gazette Newspaper in Montgomery County, Md. Tara has written and photographed sports, features and news stories for the Herald Standard, Greene County Messenger and Albert Gallatin Weekly. She holds degrees in journalism and graphic design from Waynesburg College, now Waynesburg University, and the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, respectively.

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