It is creeping closer to the time of the Buckwheat and Sausage Festival for the Volunteer Fire Department held in Ohiopyle. Pennsylvania. It is always the second full Friday and Saturday of October when the air is cool and crisp and the trees don their bright coats of multicolored cloaks of leaves, a time when the days are punctuated by the poignant and lonesome calls of geese flying overhead, a time of saying goodbye to summer and looking ahead to the chill of winter.
Almost every year for forty plus years, I have worked at this festival, starting out as a dishwasher, frying the pancakes and buckwheat cakes or potatoes, then finally I was ensconced at the huge griddles where I am frying the whole hog, wonderfully seasoned pork sausage. It is a step up from frying in cast iron skillets over a double, gas ring flame.
Chris Fennimore usually comes to visit this volunteer organization to sample the hotcakes and sausage. Once, WQED came out to film our crew when they were documenting the many hands of volunteers in and around Pittsburgh. The sausage fryers weren’t the only stars, but the cake fryers, potato fryers, the batter makers, and the servers. They also visited the cider makers and many booths that lined the streets of Ohiopyle. If you know the town of Ohiopyle, you know it is little more than a crossroad near the beautiful state park and waterfalls.
The bike trails and the roar of the falls are a magnet for visitors. There are other local attractions as well. There are two homes built by the famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright: Falling Waters and Kentuck Knob. I have had the blessing of visits to both. My great uncle was care taker at Falling Waters and as a child I was able to gambol on the property surrounding the famous Edgar Kaufman home. I was also given a private tour of the Kentuck Knob home by Mrs. I. N. Hagan when I helped to deliver some artwork to her. Both are unusual in design. Falling Waters is a cantilevered structure hovering over a mountain stream and the copper roofed Kentuck Knob has not square rooms and a wood slab as a dining room table. Tours are available to see the other unusual and beautiful aspects of these sites.