Twins Days set to return in August

April Helms
Kent Weeklies
Jillian Sosnak (left) and Josh Sosnak (right) wave to the participants in the Twins Days parade in Twinsburg in 2018. The 2020 Twins Days was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is scheduled to return in 2021, with the theme The Roaring Twinties.

TWINSBURG -- Twinsburg will be taken back to the Roaring Twinties Aug. 6 through 8. 

No, that is not a typo. The Twins Days Festival will adopt a 1920s theme for the 2021 event, and the committee is encouraging those attending to think flappers, jazz, silent movies, Art Deco and other Roaring 20s highlights when they dress for the biggest annual gathering of twins in the world.

"The committee started planning right after the first of the year, and were finding ways to address any health mandates that could be in place at the time of the festival in August," said Andrew Miller, executive director of the festival. "For several of our events, we were coming up with alternate plans. With mandates being lifted as of June 2, planning has become much easier for us. However, there are a few changes that we have put in place that we will retain simply to provide for a better environment for attendees."

The state lifting the majority of the mandates put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic as of June 2 "will definitely help in the planning and execution of this years festival," Miller said. 

"Our biggest concern would've been obviously distancing, as well as mask wearing enforcement in the middle of August," he said. "We were putting together alternate plans to address some of the distancing issues, however, we can now move forward as we normally have in the past, with a few modifications in some areas."

One change will be with the Double Take Parade, which will be Aug. 7, Miller said. 

"Where we normally have four large groups of walking twins we will now have just one large group that will be located earlier in the parade so they do not need to be standing around the Township Square waiting to go into the parade," he said.

Another big change is moving the indoor events on Friday afternoon from the high school to the Twinsburg Tiger Stadium, Miller said. 

"This will give us much more room for distancing and lots of fresh air," Miller said. "One of the final changes that will stay in place for this year is moving our bingo event on Sunday from the the multipurpose room inside the community center building outdoors into the main entertainment tent on Sunday. This will allow for us to distance people better, be out in the fresh air, and allow for higher number of people to participate in the event."

In addition, Miller said there will be no Pepsi booths.

"We are going back to the practice of allowing our food vendors to sell product at their food booths, and there will also be  a couple of additional beverage vendors throughout the festival grounds," Miller said. He added that the festival also has "increased the number of hand-washing stations, and have added hand sanitizer stations throughout the park."

A new feature at this year's Twins Days will be a cornhole tournament on Aug. 7, with proceeds going to the Twinsburg Vocal Music Boosters, Miller said. The Saturday tournament is open to anyone attending the festival.  

Miller said the festival so far has two sponsors. Sheetz will sponsor the festival's Welcome Hot Dog Roast on Aug. 6, and Meijer will be the main sponsor of the fireworks display Aug. 7, starting at dusk.

While it is hard to gauge how many people might attend this year, Miller said that the Twins Days Festival committee was "confident that we could at least get to numbers that we had with the last-in person event in 2019."

"We are not really sure what to expect as far as attendance goes for this year," he said. "We have the general visitor attendance, and then we have our registered twins. We anticipate  a slight decrease in some of those numbers simply due to some hesitancy of getting out there regarding the health situation and possibly some travel bans that may still be in place in other areas of the country. With that being said, we have gotten a great response from people, that they are really anxious to get back to attending Twins Days again. Plus, I think people are just anxious to get out and attend an outdoor event again this summer, since most outdoor events were canceled last year. So, there could be a downturn of attendance,  or there could be an uptick in attendance."

Miller said that the committee had to refund some deposits after last year's Twins Days was canceled, but some revenue was generated through its virtual festival by selling special edition T-shirts.

"Though the revenue was disrupted, our expenses were down due to not having to secure all of the rentals such as tents, golf carts, tables, chairs, bathroom facilities, etc.," he said. "Our organization wasn't the only organization to be challenged with a reduction in revenue. All of our volunteer and booster groups, such as athletic boosters, vocal music boosters, and some of the local church groups that generate fundraising revenue at Twins Days also felt the pinch. In addition, our food and craft vendors, etc., were affected, especially with most summer events being shut down, all of these groups and vendors were hit with the loss of revenue."

Twins Days information

With the exception of the cornhole tournament, Friday's events are for registered twins, multiples and their families, and not open to the public. Events include a hot dog roast, a golf outing at Solon’s Grantwood Golf Course, a volleyball tournament, the crowing of the Royal Court, and a raffle.

Saturday morning kicks off with the “Double Take” parade. Activities during the day will include twins contests, twins talent show; twins research area, twins group photo, entertainment, arts & crafts and twin related/sponsored booths, small amusement rides and games, and a fireworks show. 

Sunday morning’s activities include the Twins Days 5K Run and Fun Walk benefiting Empower Sports. 

Twins are encouraged to register at the festival to be able to participate in the twin-related activities and to be included in the official count. Registration forms can be downloaded from the Twins Days web site at twinsdays.org. The twins can also register at the festival site.

A schedule of events also can be found at twinsdays.org online.

Reporter April Helms can be reached at ahelms@thebeaconjournal.com