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Spiedie Fest begins in Binghamton

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Spiedie Fest begins in Binghamton
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The 27th Annual Spiedie Fest is underway in Binghamton. Thousands of people came out to enjoy the first day of the popular event. YNN's Melissa Kakareka tells us what this year's festival has to offer.

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- The day that Spiedie lovers have been waiting for is finally here.

"I've been living here since I was born and I come every year and just have so much fun," said Sean Buchler.

The 2011 Spiedie Fest kicked off in Otsiningo Park Friday afternoon with fresh food, cold drinks and live music, and organizers say this year's fair is bigger and better than ever.

"There is lots of new stuff this year at Spiedie Fest. We've got a Family Fun Tent with free activities for the kids and down at the Hope Tent they've actually got an inline skate park right inside their tent where there will be shows going on," said Spiedie Fest organizer Dave Pessagno.

Visitors also watched the event's first ever Battle of the Bands. Organizers say the new event is one of the most successful additions to the festival this year.

"We've had a huge response to this, I'm not ever sure how many bands are going to show up," said Organizer Marsha Maroney.

But of course the most exciting event of Spiedie Fest is the annual hot air balloon launch. Two new balloons are lighting up the sky for visitors, including a new shark balloon that organizers say everyone must see.

“It’s probably the best special shape I've ever seen in my 27 years that we've been doing this," said Pessagno.

With so many new and old activities to choose from, this year's event is fun for the whole family.

Spiedie Fest will continue all day Saturday and Sunday.

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