Two Fort Wayne parks will be busy this weekend with religiously oriented festivals.
Fifteen area Knights of Columbus councils and Redeemer Radio, 1450-AM and 89.9-FM, will sponsor their first Faith, Family, Fatherhood Festival this Friday-Sunday at Headwaters Park, Clinton and Superior streets.
The Knights of Columbus, or K of C, is a Catholic fraternal order of men, and Redeemer Radio broadcasts Catholic programming. But the festival — planning for which started 14 months ago — is intended to be a celebration of Christian beliefs and values, not just Catholic, said Mark Michuda, festival chairman.
“There are so many values we share together, and that is what we want to celebrate,” Michuda said.
Admission is free, but there will be charges for some rides, food, beverages and a dance Saturday night, he said. Numerous brochures and pamphlets on faith and family life also will be available for free.
•Friday: The celebration of the faith begins with Mass led by Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend at 5 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Calhoun Street and Jefferson Boulevard.
At 6:15 p.m., people will parade to Headwaters Park, where food and beverages will be available. The Catholic music duo Popple will perform at 7:30 p.m.
•Saturday: The day celebrating the family begins at 8 a.m. with a Pancake & Sausage Breakfast and a 5K run. Run registration opens at 7 a.m. Cost is $15 in advance and $20 the day of the race. To register in advance, go to the event website, www.kofcfestival.com, click on “Schedule of Events” and scroll down to information about the race.
Nationally known Catholic priest, author and radio show host the Rev. Larry Richards will speak on the family at 11 a.m., followed by a blessing of families, opportunity to attend confession and family praying of the Rosary.
Richards is founder and president of The Reason for our Hope Foundation, a nonprofit organization created to educate people about Jesus Christ, it says on the foundation website, www.thereasonforourhope.org. He also is host of the nationally distributed radio program “Changed Forever with Father Larry Richards,” which airs on Redeemer Radio.
Other festival activities Saturday include music, food, games, rides and more from noon to 7 p.m. Entertainment will include the show choirs from Bishop Luers and Bishop Dwenger high schools, beginning about 2 p.m.
People can enjoy square dancing and western line dancing 7-11 p.m., with music provided by Bill Werling and his band. Admission is $3 per person.
•Sunday: The celebration of fatherhood begins with a brunch, bingo and games from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Father-and-children events will take place 1-3 p.m.
The Fort Wayne Area Community Band will perform a concert 2-3:30 p.m. Ballroom dancers also will provide an exhibition performance during that time.
The Rev. David Mary Engo, a local member of the Franciscan Brothers Minor religious order, will speak from 3:30-4 p.m. He will be followed by a special blessing for fathers and a closing ceremony.
For information and schedule updates, go to www.kofcfestival.com.
The second annual Amnesty & Deliverance Community Festival will take place 1-9 p.m. Saturday at McMillen Park, Oxford Street and Hessen Cassel Road. The free event is sponsored by local nonprofit organization Ayers Communications and is designed to encourage more cooperation between churches and government, said Joseph Ayres, the organization's CEO and executive director.
Activities scheduled throughout the day include awards to people making a difference in the community; a families against violence rally at 4 p.m. and signing of a family pledge of nonviolence; performances by music, poetry and dance artists and groups, including a 6 p.m. concert by the Ty Causey Band; boys' and girls' basketball tournaments; free haircuts for boys and men and free hair styling for girls and women; food vendors; mammogram testing; and information booths.
People attending are asked to bring canned goods or nonperishable foods for donation to Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana.
For more information, call 348-6080.