MECCA - In a community as close as kernels on a cob, a corn roast was a fitting fundraiser for its year-round children's events.
"They're fresh out of the field this morning. You can't get any better than that," Mecca Township Trustee Blake Peterson said.
More than 50 dozen ears were donated to the Mecca Civic Organization from Lutz Farm in Leavittsburg, with proceeds benefiting the organization's scholarship fund and children's holiday events at Christmas and Easter.
"The kids are going to remember growing up here," Peterson said.
He's been helping with the roast since the tradition began 14 years ago. Along with other Peterson family members, he helped with the roasting, placing heads of corn in a large roasting basket still with the husks on.
About 15 minutes on each side over a hot grill, a quick shucking and a dip in a basin of melted butter and the ears were ready to be eaten by the crowd of locals who attended. Many enjoyed their meal under the park's pavilion, where a band played live music.
Tribune Chronicle / Margaret Thompson
Brian Peterson, left, and Kevin Peterson place a large cover over grilling baskets filled with corn. Mecca hosted its 14th annual corn roast Saturday to raise money for children’s events throughout the year.
Among them was Mary Letwen, 83, and her family. She and her husband Joe Letwen, 90, have been in Mecca almost their entire lives, since before Mosquito Creek Reservoir existed.
"(My husband) always tells everybody he was born in the middle of the lake," Mary Letwen said.
Her memories of the town included the addition of electricity and the building of Causeway Sporting Goods, which is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.
"We didn't have a telephone for probably, oh my, I was probably 17," she said.
Letwen said the community has always been close, something with which Linda Finlaw, owner of Causeway Sporting Goods, agreed.
"It's wonderful. Just a nice close knit town," she said.
Finlaw had the honor of being the grand marshal at the day's opening parade. The event also included a Chinese auction, games, prizes and a trunk sale. Everyone in attendance seemed to agree that the corn and community were a hit.
"When you get a good harvest here locally, you can't beat it," Peterson said.