MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ - It was perfect autumn weather for the Mountainside PTA Fall Festival at Deerfield School on Saturday from 12 noon to 4 p.m. The festival is an exciting annual event that features food, rides, bouncers, games, vendors, music, and much, much more. The festival is a longstanding community event that area residents look forward to every year. There was something for everyone, young and old alike.  Many families and community members attended to enjoy the fun and participate in this PTA's community "give back" day.  Kathleen Bazydlo attended with her grandchildren.  She said, "We come every year."

"The festival is successful because of the amazing group of volunteers," said event chair Jeanie Ruban. "My entire family gets involved every year and they are key to making this event happen."  She pointed out that Mr. Young, the Deerfield School Social Studies teacher, organizes students to do community service hours. This encourages many of the community's youth to volunteer for the fair.  Ruban said that the group of 8th graders that volunteered this year were absolutely outstanding.  "They came early and stayed late." Ruban also praised Erin Kraven, who began shadowing her for this year's Fall Festival and will do the same next year so that she will be ready to chair it alone the following year.

Ruban also expressed her appreciation to the groups that made generous donations.  The donors include the Mountainside Mayor and Council, the Mountainside PAL and the Mountainside PBA.

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We also met Jean Perrotta, Jeanie Ruban's mother who was volunteering to sell tickets.  She served on the committee that organized the very first annual PTA fairs. When it was first held, Jean would make homemade crullers to sell.  This year, guests could purchase Zeppoles and the Mountainside Volunteer Firemen and other community volunteers cooked burgers and hot dogs all day on the grill.

Yo Addiction, the self-serve yogurt lounge in Springfield sold frozen yogurt and toppings.  Paul Marzarell, Owner and General Manager, was there with his team.  Every 20 minutes, throughout the festival, they gave away a free t-shirt.

There was a nice selection of wares from vendors. School and community organizations set up tables including the Girls Scout Troop 40962 that sold chocolate, nuts and magazines. Early in the day, the troop’s table was organized by the Phillipou family.  

The PTA was selling spirit wear for Deerfield School and there was also a Tricky Tray table. One of the Tricky Tray volunteers Jovan said that it was the third year that she and her friend Dana were there to help. "This is a great Mountainside event," she said. 

As the afternoon progressed, the Mountainside PTA Fall Festival was bustling with friends and neighbors coming together in the beautiful weather to celebrate their community and enjoy all of the festivities at the annual event.