AUBURN | What began as a fun party in Chris Major's backyard in 1998, has evolved into a community-wide and non-profit event dedicated to helping local youth.
Majorpalooza kicked off its 14th year on Sunday afternoon with music blaring, children bouncing and everyone enjoying the summer-like weather in support of local charities.
Major is the man behind it all. The event was named after him because it started at his house, he said. It's grown and evolved over the years with more than 38 sponsors helping and a handful of friends and family working side-by-side.
For the first time it was held at Falcon Park.
"It's all about giving back to our community and by doing this every year we're really able to do that," Major said. "This is our first year at Doubledays but we're hoping to keep it here, it's been great."
The event featured five live bands, fun activities for children of all ages, food and drink and a giant space for everyone to hang and enjoy the warm weather.
"For $20, a family of four can come in and just enjoy the day," Major said. "And after 5 p.m. adults can have some fun and relax, and enjoy the weekend."
Maureen Burns and Tracy Carr were up early for the 5k run but made it back on Sunday afternoon to enjoy good food and music.
"It's really nice that they were able to move it down here," Carr said.
"This is great for the community and it's been really great to watch the journey that Chris and Majorpalooza has taken."
Pat Morrell of Seneca Falls stood nearby as his daughter enjoyed the different activities for kids.
"It's been a great day for this," he said, "And the kids have really had the opportunity to do run around and do their own thing."
Six-year-old Bella Guerrette had a hard time deciding on her favorite part of the day.
"She really has loved it all," her mother Jackie Guerette said. "We have always come out in support of Majorpalooza and this has been a great family day," she added.
Chris Major said he was excited about the day's itinerary as he and his fellow board members worked to keep it running as smoothly as possible. Last year, Majorpalooza raised more than $20,000 at the party alone, and this year, Major said he hopes to set a record.
"We love being able to be here and ultimately it's more than just a big party," he said. "It's about giving back to our community and that's what we want people to come away with —having fun and contributing to a great cause."
Staff writer Sistina Giordano can be reached at 282 -2237 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at CitizenGiordano.