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Preparations nearly complete for Shamrock Festival

Special to The PREVIEW

Photo courtesy Sally Neel The St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church annual Shamrock Festival on Saturday, Aug. 17, begins a 8 a.m. with a giant yard sale and used book sale. The festival also will feature a silent auction inside the church, a quilt raffle, a fly fishing equipment raffle, along with a dinner under the tent at 6 p.m.

Photo courtesy Sally Neel
The St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church annual Shamrock Festival on Saturday, Aug. 17, begins a 8 a.m. with a giant yard sale and used book sale. The festival also will feature a silent auction inside the church, a quilt raffle, a fly fishing equipment raffle, along with a dinner under the tent at 6 p.m.

The excitement is building as parishioners of St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church prepare for the upcoming annual Shamrock Festival, a day filled to the brim with community fun, food and shopping bargains.

The festival takes place under a giant tent located behind the church parking lot at 225 S. Pagosa Blvd., beginning at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 17. Proceeds from the event are designated by the church for community outreach, allowing the church to offer assistance to local residents in need.

“The Shamrock Festival was the first church activity in which my family and I participated upon our arrival in Pagosa Springs five years ago,” says Fr. Doug Neel, rector of St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church. “We were so impressed with the amount of commitment and energy that the parishioners gave towards hosting this large festival. Even more impressive was the spirit of joy among them as they worked together to make the day a success. Each year, the parish family has stepped up to the task to offer a truly fun day for the enjoyment of our community and to help provide a significant outreach fund for our church to use throughout the year.”

The day begins at 8 a.m. with a giant yard sale under the tent, a one-stop-shopping opportunity for those who enjoy cruising the neighborhoods for yard sale bargains. At the same time, in the church library, a fabulous used book sale will offer paperback books on sale for only 25 cents each and hardbacks for a dollar. Raffle tickets for the handmade quilt and fly fishing package will also be on sale as long as tickets last.

At the conclusion of the yard sale, the tent will be transformed into an outdoor bistro for a lasagna dinner, served at 6 p.m. Raffle winners will be announced at the dinner (you need not be present to win). Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres will be served beginning at 4 p.m. while shoppers enjoy browsing the elegant silent auction in the church.

Women of the church first gathered in March with their sewing machines and supplies to begin work on a beautiful handmade queen-size bed comforter (it will also cover a king size bed), and matching pillows. This year’s quilt includes shades of blue, beige and rust and will be a beautiful decorative addition in the home of the lucky winner. The women named this year’s quilt, “San Juan Streams,” because the colors remind them of the beautiful flowing waters of the San Juan Mountains.

Quilt raffle tickets are sold individually for $1, six for $5, or in packets of 12 tickets for $10. Tickets are now on sale and can purchased (while they last) up until the drawing at the festival dinner under the tent. The quilt raffle alone brings in $5,000 each year to assist local outreach.

Not to be outdone by the women of the church, the men of St. Patrick’s have put together a raffle that fly fishing aficionados are clamoring to win; a handmade R.L. Winston 4 wt./4 pc. flyrod and case, a Lamson Konic reel, along with fly fishing gear and supplies, topped off by a guided fishing expedition to choice waters. Tickets are $20 each, with only 300 being sold.

The Shamrock Festival schedule includes:

• 8 a.m.–noon: yard sale under the giant tent behind the church.

• 4–6 p.m.: cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.

• 4:30 p.m.: silent auction.

• 6 p.m.: Homemade lasagna dinner (vegetarian included) under the tent, $20.

The Shamrock Festival is an event anticipated by the entire Pagosa Springs community. It is an opportunity to come together, have fun, buy some great new and used items, enjoy a wonderful meal under the tent and, most importantly, help provide outreach funds that will be distributed within the Pagosa Springs community.

For more information on how to purchase raffle tickets, meal tickets, or to make donations to the yard sale or silent auction, call the church office at 731-5801.

This story was posted on August 8, 2013.