20th annual Kewanna Fall Festival brings big weekend to the 'little town with a big heart'

It's been 20 years since Tom Mate's dream of bringing a festival back to the small town of Kewanna became a reality.

Since its start in 2003, the Kewanna Fall Festival has continued to impress visitors from both within and outside the community with its carnival, vendors, food, festivities and free circus.

In charge of the festival since Mate's passing two years ago, Ashley VanLake says the Kewanna Fall Fest has done a lot for the place known as 'the little town with a big heart.' Despite Kewanna's population of 568 the festival brings in a big crowd each year that VanLake hopes to continue to grow. 



Trying to keep up Mate's legacy, VanLake said the inspiration behind the festival was all for the kids. With the bigger rides and circus, festival insurance can get expensive. Luckily, grants from REMC, NIPSCO, Northern Indiana Community Foundation and Fulton County Tourism help make it possible, alongside sponsors from local farmers and business owners. 



Expanding the festival a little more each year, VanLake says the festival goes from part of Kewanna's Main St, Logan St and Aurora St, where it also trickles down into the park. This year the circus big top will also be back, one thing Mate always loved. 



Listen for more about the festival when VanLake joins the First Federal Radio Program on GIANT fm WROI Friday at 7:30 a.m.