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Trumbull Day Meets Westfield

First Selectman Tim Herbst hopes to combine the success of last year's mall fireworks with Trumbull Day at 'minimal' expense to the town.

Trumbull Day is back, but this time it has a partner: the .

"They are carrying the cost of the fireworks, the rides, the vendors," said First Selectman Tim Herbst. The town is splitting the cost of police for the June 25 event.

Trumbull Day used to be held at  and , which are neighbors, and was canceled last year because it was consistently losing money, Herbst said.

"I think people are going to be very happy with it," he added.

"Westfield really is the driver to this," said Deborah Cox, the town's Economic Development director.

Another reason for the partnership is to boost the mall, which recently spent $45 million for renovations. Before that it, mall officials felt separated from the town, according to the first selectman.

"It sends a message we're committed to the Trumbull Mall," Herbst said. "That's our mall. We're proud of the revitalization. I think this going to be a great event."

He asked potential critics to "give it a chance."

"If you were there last year, it was a great event," Herbst said, adding that the mall is being "very generous."

The day will also include the Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., anyone with Trumbull identification can get into the zoo for $5. At 3 p.m., the mall open its doors with outdoor fun, children's activities, food and entertainment. Fireworks will start at dusk.

Resident Tom Pieragostini, a lifetime member of the who has studied town history extensively, explained the event's history.

"Trumbull Day was actually copied after the town's '175th Anniversary Family Day' parade and picnic held at Hillcrest Junior High School on Aug. 6, 1972," he said. "It was supposed to only be a one-time event, part of the town's celebrations that year, but it caught on and grew into the largest single-day event in Fairfield County by the 1990s."

Reactions on Facebook primarily opposed the merger, saying it's not truly Trumbull Day.

"Westfield is certainly welcome to have an event..but frankly, it won't be Trumbull Day," wrote one poster. All said the high school is the proper place for the event.

Martha Jankovic-Mark May 04, 2011 at 02:25 PM
I attended last year's event and had a very nice time. Perhaps because we were sitting on asphalt, there were fewer mosquitoes. That was good! While it was not the same as when the event was held on the THS grounds, it was an enjoyable evening filled with socializing with friends and watching great fireworks. I'd much rather have the event at the Westfield Mall than not have it at all, and I am grateful to Westfield for sponsoring it.
Lee Salzberg May 04, 2011 at 05:50 PM
Local non-profit organizations that manned the entry gates at Trumbull Day benefitted by splitting a quarter of the admissions take. This contributed to a major portion of their income, which enabled them to do the many good works they accomplished. With the mall running Trumbull Day, where does that leave the charitable organizations?
Martha Jankovic-Mark May 04, 2011 at 08:01 PM
I know that the Trumbull Youth Association members helped to collect admissions last year. I'm not sure if other groups also were involved or if those organization benefitted financially.
Rosey May 04, 2011 at 08:13 PM
Is there a specific cost to how much we are paying for this event? I find it dificult to run a town event and not have it be self funded. We are complaining about the cost of education and raising taxes. If it does not benefit more that 50% of the polulation, we need to reconsider where we spend our money.
Robin May 09, 2011 at 05:36 PM
Great idea - first really good one I've heard in a long time. It will be a much more pleasant event at the mall and much more accessible to all. Looking forward to it!

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