8th Annual CommunityFest Had Winter Haven Residents Get Out And Work Out
by James Coulter
Last Saturday was a beautiful, sunny day for people to go outside and exercise. AdventHealth and its partners allowed residents to do just that with their Sports Zone at the annual CommunityFest in downtown Winter Haven.
AdventHealth teamed up with Bond Clinic, the Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team, and other partners to offer healthy outdoor fun through the Sports Zone. Attendees could race through an obstacle course, play within bounce houses, look inside an ambulance, and even test their stamina by pretending to water ski.
Ashley Conrad-Scanlan, Marketing Director for Bond Clinic, has been participating in the event since its inception. She was especially excited to help Bond Clinic expand its footprint through its involvement with the Sports Zone.
“It has blown expectations out of the water,” she said. “There is such a great turnout and so many smiling faces and new faces of people who have moved into the area getting a really good taste of who we are by being with us.”
As someone who has lived in Winter Haven since birth, Ashley loves how her local community collaborates to create such a unique event. Only through the hard work and cooperation of more than 85 local businesses can something like this be pulled off, she said.
“This is one of the best events in Downtown Winter Haven, and it is because of the collaboration of 85 businesses that are out here,” she said. “The stuff is free, the atmosphere is very positive, this is the limelight of who we are in Winter Haven.”
For the eighth consecutive year, Communityfest drew locals and visitors alike in downtown Winter Haven for free fun with bounce houses, arts and crafts, and live entertainment. Food trucks and local vendors were also set up within Central Park and the nearby streets.
Brianna Price, Executive Director for the Winter Haven Chamber, loves being able to see residents congregate together in the park for a quality fun time with each other. After two years of uncertainty brought about by the ongoing pandemic, such a turnout proved especially uplifting, as people are more than eager to come out for events like this.
“It has been amazing,” she said. “We had a wonderful turnout with wonderful weather…What I enjoy most is seeing the community come out and enjoy all the smiles on the families’faces. That is the best part.”
Communityfest has been sponsored by Citizen Bank and Trust since its inception. As a bank that has been around for 100 years, Citizens maintains its longevity through such community involvement. Only by connecting with the community can a bank such as theirs remain a community staple, said Brian Bracey, Chief Credit Officer.
“We like to be big advocates in the community, show our support to all of our markets and help the family with banking and other community events,” he said. “Not only do we provide banking services, but we want to be a partner in the communities that we serve.”
As for that day, he appreciated how the great weather cooperated with them, allowing them to once again host another great event during another great year, he said.
“It is a nice busy event with great weather today,” he said. “It is great to see all the families come out and enjoy each other today. With what everybody has been facing these couple of years, this is a great event and well attended.”