Harlem is inviting all Laurel and Hardy fans to the city Saturday to celebrate the more rotund half of the comedic duo.
The 24th annual Oliver Hardy Festival begins with opening ceremonies at 9 a.m. and a parade through downtown Harlem at 10 a.m. The parade begins on Milledgeville Road at Starling Funeral Home and continues onto Louisville Road to West Forrest Street to Harlem Middle School.
“Hopefully we’ll have great weather,” said Robin Root, a volunteer event organizer.
The festival, which drew about 30,000 people in 2011, features Laurel and Hardy movies played at the Laurel and Hardy Museum of Harlem.
“The museum is a popular attraction, definitely,” Root said.
The family-friendly festival will include look-a-like contests, Laurel and Hardy skits and children’s rides and games. The festival is free and no pets will be allowed.
Two stages, one in front of City Hall and one near the former Harlem Department of Public Safety, will feature a variety of live entertainment including Atlanta’s Sol Junkie at 2 p.m.
Most food vendors will be located in food courts near City Hall and the former Columbia Theatre.
The festival ends about 5 p.m.