Our Lady of the Lakes Spring Festival March 13 - 16

Religious Wednesday, March 5, 2014


Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic Church is hosting its 40th annual Spring Festival on the school grounds at N.W. 67 Avenue and Miami Lakeway North during the weekend of March 13-16.

Festival hours are Thursday, March 13, from 5 to 10 p.m.; Friday, March 14, from 5 to 11:30 p.m.; Saturday, March 15, from 1 to 11:30 p.m.; and Sunday, March 16, from noon to 9 p.m.

There is something for everyone in the family for a fun-filled day or weekend. Guests can stroll through the main section, play games, visit local business exhibits and stop for dinner.

The food court features an array of the best international food booths found at any carnival with something for every taste including Latin, Cuban, Mexican, Italian, Jamaican, Colombian, Filipino, BBQ, American, Spanish Tapas and much more.

“Due to its well-earned reputation, increasing numbers of people attend the festival to eat some of the most diverse and incredibly delicious food all made fresh,” said Diane Pantaleon, food booth’s chairperson.

More than 20 popular carnival rides and attractions will thrill people of all ages, including toddlers in the special kiddy ride section. Visitors can see Miami Lakes from the top of the Giant Ferris Wheel, listen to loud music at high speeds on the Gravitron, and experience the thrill of the Ring of Fire. Youngsters can scramble through fun houses, climb aboard a pirate ship and play some carnival games.

The main stage will be full of different live shows and performances throughout the weekend. Music will fill the evenings with live bands and DJs. Sunday afternoon is family day featuring a children’s talent show and performances by area dance studios. Those interested in performing on the stage are asked to email laura.armas@live.com for details and information.

A basketball tournament, which is open to the public, is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. both days. Players and teams can register online at www.miamibasketball.net, or andre@miamibasketball.net.

Admission to the festival is free, but ride tickets are required. Ride bracelets may be purchased at a discounted price after Masses on March 8 and 9, and until Wednesday, March 12, in the Church gift show.

Discounted pre-festival prices are Thursday ($15), Friday ($20), Saturday ($25), and Sunday ($25). A four-day bracelet is only $50. Bracelets can also be purchased on the festival website, www.ollnet.com/festival, and also during the festival at an additional charge. Single ride tickets will be available at any time during the event.

The festival also features two raffle drawings including the Grand Raffle with a grand prize of $2,500, and subsequent prizes of $1,000, $500, and $250. Tickets are available at the Church office and at the Raffle Booth during the festival.

A second special raffle, with three cash prizes including first prize of up to $7,500, second prize up to $5,000, and third price up to $2,500, will be drawn on Sunday evening. A maximum of 300 tickets are sold so the odds of winning are greater. Special raffle tickets may be purchased at the Church gift shop.

Festival sponsorships are still available as is booth space for area businesses who would like to promote their services or products. For more information, contact Elsa Reus, director of Development at 305-558-2202, ext. 616.

It takes more than 30 volunteers about four months to organize the weekend event and more than 300 people to make it run smoothly. The festival is the primary fundraiser for Our Lady of the Lakes. Proceeds support the operating budget for the church and school. Last year, more than 50,000 people from Miami-Dade and Broward counties attended the weekend.

“If you come to our Festival, you are guaranteed to have a great time,” said Father Jose Alvarez, Pastor.