Photo by Dave Warner – An aerial photo of the 2022 Dolgeville Violet Festival parade. The event highlights the village’s history, local artisans, and vendors.

By Carol Vogel

The Village of Dolgeville is gearing up for the Annual Violet Festival weekend, June 9-11. Each year the center of town fills with vendors, food, and entertainment, and it’s a great way to kick off the summer season. According to the Violet Festival website, “The Festival draws more than 75 vendors, 80 organizations that participate in the parade, and over 10,000 people to the Village during the three-day event.”

Through flowers, art, history, and community, Dolgeville celebrates its past, present, and future through the festival. Show your Violet Spirit is the theme this year, encouraging everyone to celebrate the spirit of community and local history in your own unique way.

Violet Festival Program Cover By Barton Hanna Design, used with permission.

Violet Festival Program Cover By Barton Hanna Design, used with permission.

Crystal Napier, President of the Violet Festival Committee, mentioned a few new events and activities this year, such as a Historic Cemetery Walk and some added activities for kids. “We also have a new organizer for the Violet 5K Run and Kids Fun Run on Sunday, and we have a new timing company working with us this year, Leone Timing and Results Services out of Syracuse.”

The Violet Festival is a huge year-round undertaking, and volunteers make it happen. “I’m always thankful for any volunteers that we get. We have volunteers who come out on that day to help us who aren’t on the committee, but they come out to lend a hand for the weekend. This year we had extra things we had to work through, and we have a very small group of active volunteers. We definitely need more help in the future!” said Crystal.

There is still time to participate if you are interested in being part of one of the largest and most anticipated parades in the area. Please get in touch with Crystal at or call 315-527-9585 to have your group added to the lineup for the Violet Festival parade.

Funding the Festival

Fundraising is an integral part of the festival. One of these fundraising efforts is the Themed Basket Raffle at the Violet Festival Information Booth, with the winners drawn on the festival’s final day. Local businesses and individuals donate baskets ranging from food and spirits, household and children’s items, summer fun, and more to support the Violet Festival. Be sure to stop by and show your support!

This year an Inaugural Violet Festival Golf Tournament will take place on August 12th at the Little Falls Municipal Golf Course. The fundraiser format will be four-person scramble teams, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There will be prizes, a 50/50, and a Chinese Auction. If you want to play in the tournament, sponsor a hole, or donate, please get in touch with Ruth at 315-868-4130.

Village-Wide Pride

The Violet Festival is a village-wide endeavor, and the entire village gets into the spirit. You can find treasures at the garage sales and take in house decorations where residents show their support and decorating talents. The festival is also a wonderful way to support the small businesses in town, especially the Lyndon Lyon Greenhouse, whose famous violets are the namesake of the festival. Main Street businesses will be open and will have specials and Violet Festival-themed items for sale, so keep an eye out while you explore!

Photos courtesy of The Cakery Cafe.

Photos courtesy of The Cakery Cafe.

The Mayor of Dolgeville, Mary Puznowski, is proud of the Violet Festival tradition. “I am so pleased and excited that the Violet Festival is our premiere event established here in the Village of Dolgeville. Last year it returned post- Covid, after a necessary hiatus, and this year promises to be better than ever!”

“The committee is so dedicated- they work year-round to make it the successful event it continues to be, and I am most grateful to them and to the entire community who supports the festival. The festival highlights the history of our African Violet heritage here with the hybridization of the world’s first double pink violet by world-renowned grower Lyndon Lyon. For plant lovers, the greenhouse is a must-see,” she said.

Puznowski continued, “We welcome all visitors to our lovely Village for the festival weekend- there is so much to experience, and as always, the parade on Saturday is one that you don’t want to miss – it has become known as the best in the area! I want to extend a very warm welcome to all who will be joining us for the weekend, and I’ll see you there!”

Festival Events & Highlights

Friday, June 9th:
The festival begins Friday, June 9, with Village-wide garage sales at 9 am. The opening ceremonies at Joe Condello Gazebo in Plowe Park start at 6:30 pm and will feature the Presentation of the Lyndon Lyon Community Award to this year’s recipient Big M, the crowning of the Violet Festival Queen, Anna “Aunt Annie” Musella and the announcing of the winners of the House Decorating Contest.

Following the ceremony at 7 pm, the Violet Festival Princess & Little Mister Pageant takes the stage. The pageant is for ages 5-8, 9-12, 13-17. A Dolgeville Community Band Concert from 7:30-9 pm will close the events for Friday evening in town. If you are looking for even more entertainment on Friday evening, you can catch Whiskey Creek performing at Rustic Ties from 7-11 pm.

Saturday, June 10th:
Saturday festivities begin with a Pancake Breakfast at the Dolgeville Firehouse from 7-10 am, followed by the ever-popular Violet Festival Parade at 10 am. Village Garage sales continue, check out all the craft vendors and indulge in great food in Plowe Park. The Dolgeville Manheim Historical Society will be open from 9-5 pm. Families will find lots of great activities like Horse Drawn Wagon Rides, Free Kids activities like bounce houses, and a new rock-climbing wall. There will also be a mechanical bull to test your staying power! Don’t miss the Boy Scouts Chicken BBQ and enjoy live music throughout the day.

“Salisbury Covered Bridge in Summer” by Festival Featured Artist Anne Contino. Used with permission.

“Salisbury Covered Bridge in Summer” by Festival Featured Artist Anne Contino. Used with permission.

The Graystone will host the flower and art shows throughout the day, both Saturday and Sunday. The annual Flower Show and this year’s Featured Artist, Anne Contino, will be showcased from 10-5 pm, and the DCS Student Art Show K-12, including BOCES Pre-K & Dolgeville Pre-K, will be open from 1-4 pm.

Rounding out the 2nd day are the Violet Festival’s Got Talent Contest from 7:30-10 pm and fireworks at 10 pm. Dopp’s Inn will have two live bands on Saturday, Carson Murphy playing from 4-7 and Brimstone from 9-11 pm with food specials available.

Sunday, June 11th:
Sunday kicks off with the “Run for Violets” 5K Run/Walk and 1K Kids Fun Run, with registration from 7-8 am and races beginning at 8:30 am and 9:30 am, respectively. An Ecumenical Service will take place at Plowe Park Gazebo from 10-11 am, with the Violet Festival Poetry Contest following.

A new event this year will be a historical Cemetery Walking Tour with the Town of Manheim and Village of Dolgeville Historian Sue Perkins from 12-2 pm. Learn about the lives of famous residents and their contributions to the community. Craft vendors, art, flowers, and music will fill the final day.

For a full listing of events, visit the Dolgeville Violet Festival website: