Manassas Journal Messenger | Heritage comes alive at Old World Fest

The drummer from Alte Kameraden, a Bavarian band, played an anvil to an appreciative crowd at the Loy E. Harris Pavilion on Saturday.

Bruce Vandusen, the assistant manager at the Pavilion, said the act might have been a first in Manassas.

“I’ve never seen anyone play an anvil before,” Vandusen said. “He did a very nice job.”

Alte Kameraden and the audience were at the Pavilion for the Old World Festival.

Children danced in front of the bandstand to the polkas and waltzes the band played.

Vendors sold American, Eastern European, Lebanese and Greek food from booths at the edge of the Pavilion.

The Happy Hoofers, a Manassas-based gang of soft-shoe dancers between 66- and 92-years-old, elicited hoots and cheers from the crowd during their high-kicking finale to Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York.”

Arlene Blanke, one of the Happy Hoofers, said the team, dressed in white shirts, slacks and shoes with green vests and bow ties, couldn’t have asked for more.

“We had a good turnout and they really liked us,” Blanke, 69, said.

The Happy Hoofers make eight to 10 appearances a month at nursing homes, assisted living facilities, churches and day-care centers, Blanke said.

Jessica Livera Tennakoon was one of the audience members who enjoyed the Happy Hoofers. She said it’s a group she would consider joining had she the years to do so.

“I was on the dance team in high school and I told people, ‘I’m going to be there,’ ” the 21- year-old said.

“It was very cute. They did a very good job,” she said.

Tommy Abernathy came to Manassas from Bristol for the Festival.

Abernathy, a retired military man who once lived in Manassas, came looking for some German food.

But he settled for Greek food and the music.

“It’s kind of good for them to have this here in Manassas,” Abernathy said. “I just came to see the festival.”


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