By Chris Treadway
Contra Costa Times
Posted: 10/06/2011 03:48:14 PM PDT
Leave it to Betty Reid Soskin to come up with the perfect theme for this year's Home Front Festival by the Bay in Richmond.
"Celebrating Extraordinary Ordinary People" is the slogan coined by Soskin, the 90-year-old Richmond resident and National Park Service ranger at the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park.
The theme accurately summarizes what happened in Richmond during the war and what is happening there today, which will be commemorated at the fifth annual festival from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 15 at the Craneway Pavilion and at the SS Red Oak Victory in the Port of Richmond.
The day starts with the popular YMCA Home Front Run along the waterfront and continues with live entertainment, a classic car show, Kids Zone, food and beverages, historical displays, Rosie the Riveter reunion, a blood drive and more at the Craneway at 1414 Harbour Way South.
Also on display there will be a one-third scale model of the inspirational "Remember Them: Champions for Humanity" monument.
At the Port of Richmond, the SS Red Oak Victory is scheduled to be back from its hull renovation with more displays and a signing of the new book on Henry J. Kaiser and the Richmond shipyards by historian and author Steve Gilford.
A shuttle will run between the two sites and hourly amphibious guided tours of the waterfront will be offered by San Francisco DUCK Bay Tours (tour tickets available in advance athref='http://www.hff2011.com'>www.hff2011.com).
Also back is the pre-festival USO Dance at 7 p.m. Friday at the Craneway, which will pay tribute to the late singer and actress Lena Horne. Period attire is encouraged at the dance, which will feature Robin Gregory as Lena Horne, the Singing Blue Stars, the Junius Courtney Big Band and the dance group Swing or Nothing.
Dance admission is $20 or $15 seniors, with free admission to military personnel or those who come in a military uniform.
Details on the free festival and advance tickets to the USO dance are available online at www.hff2011.com or call 510-234-3512.