'On the River' family day

By: Joel Schipper Email
By: Joel Schipper Email

UPDATE: August 4, 2012

It was a gorgeous day for families to head to the beach even if it was an urban man-made beach in downtown South Bend.

The 5th annual "On The River" is going on all weekend long.

Saturday afternoon was family day where people of all ages could come out and enjoy the more than 2,000 tons of sand that was brought in.

Kids had fun making crafts, playing games, and just enjoying the beach - along the river and Colfax.

Even some lifeguards were on hand to complete the beach theme.

The event benefits the Center for the Homeless and is made up entirely of volunteers.

“Everything out here is either donated or given to us at cost so it wouldn't be possible without the generosity of a lot of great people in our community. It's phenomenal to see the overwhelming support people pour out for us,” said Garrett Gingerich, the event director.

And tonight thousands of people are expected to hit the beach for the 21 and over party on the river which is going on now until 11 p-m.

We will take you there tonight on Newscenter 16 after the Olympics.


More than 2,000 tons of sand has been placed along the bank of the St. Joe River, turning it into a beach if only for just one weekend.

Starting Friday night, the 5th annual "On the River" event begins on the river at Niles and Colfax downtown.

There will be volleyball tournaments, live music, food, drinks, and a fireworks show Saturday night.

Teen night starts at 6:00 and then on Saturday at 11:00 a.m. Family day gets underway and then after 3:00 is the beach bash for the 21 and over crowd.

Those who go to the event will be doing more than just having a good time, they will be donating to a good cause.

“All kinds of good stuff, insurance - different things to help make this event possible,” said Garrett Gingerich, the event director. “They've been fully supportive and backs us 100% and all our net proceeds go to benefit the center for the homeless.”

For more information about "On the River", click on the Big Red Bar.

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