St. Helen’s festival sets records, raises thousands for tornado relief

Organizers of this year’s St. Helen’s Spring Festival say this year’s event was record-breaking.

And the Memorial Day tornadoes are likely part of the reason why.

Last weekend’s festival continued a more than six-decade tradition of fun for the community of Dayton, as well as an opportunity to raise funds to support tornado relief efforts.

>> PHOTOS: Did we spot you at St. Helen Festival?

In the days following the Memorial Day tornadoes, festival organizers announced they would give 10% of net profits from the festival — which support the parish in Riverside — to tornado relief efforts.

“It went very well, we heard many positive comments from those who attended,” said Don Reimer, business manager of St. Helen’s Parish. “We even heard people say they might spend a few extra dollars. The 10% was on everyone’s mind.”

Though official attendance was not counted for the event, St. Helen’s Parish leaders say they believe a record number of people attended this year’s event — its 66th — and that a record was set in gross revenue.

Approximately $347,000 in gross revenue was raised over the three-day festival, which was an all-time high for the event, Reimer said.

Parish staff are still working to determine the net profits once all expenses are paid and deducted in order to determine the final donation amount. But it will likely amount to thousands of dollars. We will share those final numbers once they are determined.

“An exact number has yet to be determined because all of the expenses have not yet been paid,” Reimer explained.

>> Tornado relief: Where to donate toys



St. Helen’s parish also is in the process of deciding how to best distribute 10% of those profits to tornado relief efforts.

The festival took place June 7-9 and included rides, games, raffles and food including its famous cabbage rolls.

>> 25 festivals every Daytonian should experience

About the Author