GRAND RAPIDS, Ohio - Crayons at the ready, “Chief Mudjaw” drew a few lines here, a few lines there, and voila: Sarah Woessner's young face was a masterpiece of blue, red, black, and white.
What did the 10-year-old from Bowling Green think of her “war paint”? It was more than cool, she said yesterday. “It's really cool.”
Sarah was among approximately 3,000 visitors expected at the weekend-long Rapid Rally Days, which concludes here today with a 7:30 p.m. performance of Guys and Dolls in the town hall.
Chief Mudjaw, aka John C. Sinkovic, was among the dozens of performers and vendors positioned along Front Street catching the attention of passers-by. Mr. Sinkovic, of West Toledo, was taking a break from his usual pastimes, archery and bow-hunting. “Today I'm face-painting kids. It's a lot of fun,” he said.
The annual Rapid Rally Days is a fund-raiser and a community get-together.
Sponsored by the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, it's a revenue-producer for civic causes, a commercial opportunity for village businesses, and a town social, according to Karen Kingston, the event's chairwoman.
“It gets people into town and it promotes our businesses,” Mrs. Kingston explained. “We want to get out the word that there's more here than the [Maumee] River.”
Beneficiaries of the fund-raising include the Grand Rapids Historical Society and the village fire department.
One of the more eye-catching sidewalk vendors was Sister Mary Regeen Ulrich, a Notre Dame nun who ministers to the homebound elderly from her base at Christ the King Church in Toledo.
To benefit her ministry, she sells her own photographs and watercolors, which feature a lot of barns. “I love barns,” Sister Mary explained.
At Front and Beaver streets, sidewalk dancers enjoyed the Classic Combination, a duo that played oldies such as “Wipeout,” “Never on Sunday,” and the older than oldie “Waltz Across Texas.”
“It's not cool, but it's fun,” said one of the dancers, Scott Turner of Toledo.