The Chautauqua Property Owners Association annual area picnics return to Wednesday this year for an evening of socialization, food and fun beginning at 5:30 p.m. across the grounds.
Last year’s picnic was moved to Thursday to avoid conflict with David McCullough’s talk about his book The Wright Brothers.
Chautauqua Institution’s grounds are divided into 10 different areas. Each area can host its own picnic or choose to combine their areas for an expanded gathering. This year, Areas 1 and 2 (Miller Park), 5 and 6 (Lincoln Park), and 9 and 10 (University Park) paired up to host joint picnics.
“It gives the neighbors a chance to get to know people that live near them,” said Carrie Zachry, CPOA picnic chair. “Homeowners, renters, guests — everyone is welcome.”
Zachry also serves as the Area 10 representative and chair of the Events Committee, a new addition to CPOA’s committees. Each area has a representative who serves as a liaison to the CPOA board. Though this is CPOA’s ninth official time hosting area picnics, Zachry said she believes the tradition of coming together with neighbors has been going on for more than 20 years.
Local musician Bill Ward will play at the Area 5 and 6 picnic, which Zachry said is one of the “best attended” picnics. While entertainment isn’t a requirement, each area is responsible for providing the main dish. Members of the areas are typically expected to bring a side dish or dessert.
“We hope that people come and meet their neighbors,” Zachry said.