Muncie Gras 2014: An Odyssey of Fun

Thousands flock DWNTWN for music, entertainment, drinking

By Rick Yencer

MUNCIE, INDIANA (NEWS) - The biggest party in Muncie delivered patrons by the busload Saturday night for entertainment ranging from male strippers to a zip line ride over DWNTWN.

For James Smith, it was waiting to get a picture with adult film actress Dani Daniels under the Cirilla's tent. And Bob Johnson had his buck out for his favorite danc at the Mark III Taproom.

Patrons saw Cheryl Crowder decked out in a glitterly silver costume and mask celebrating one of the biggest MuncieGras parties ever.

Given heavy street marketing at Ball State and elsewhere, the crowds came by buses and trolleys mainly fron Ball State. People were waiting in line to buy tickets.

Mark Douthitt, who has attended many Muncie Gras events, thought the energy and crowd was better this year, especially as DWNTWN bars like the Silo and Valhalla Room were slammed with partygoers.

It took some people 15 to 20 minutes just to get to a Silo bartender as a doorman kept count of the people coming and going for safety. The inside had a feel of only of those Bourbon Street hangouts or a New York club packed with people.

A couple stages of music kept the party loud as some bands like Tim Breckon's Big Sky Carnival Band walked up and down Walnut recreating that Mardi Gras parade atmoshpere. More than 20 bands played on the street and in bars keeping the entertainment going.

The most fun was found at a tent with male strippers and the Cirilla's tent featuring adult film actress Dani Daniels. She is a Penthouse Pet who worked in strip clubs to pay for college. Daniels is your  typical Orange County, California girl who found making adult movies and directing them is fun and profitible if you have the talent. Daniels said her true love was art and she hoped to accomplish some success at painting besides adult films.

Some of Cirilla's staff handed out shirts, beads, and also encouraged partygoers to show their boobs. Many did as Daniels did the same for a pair of beads.

The male strip show caught the attention of many women, some who jumped on stage to dance. Rod Russell was in the crowd and was amazed by the entertainment offered by musicians and dancers.

A tent full of games like human bowling and twister as well as a mechanical bull kept some partygoers having fun as the zipline gave people a chance to see it all from the air while whizzing by.

Those costumed partygoers like the Phantom of the Opera, the Wizard, and those whose face was painted like cats, dogs and other animals gave others plenty to observe.

DWNTWN development had Muncie firefighters and police officers in the crowd to ensure safety. By Sunday morning, the party was gone and Muncie fighters were hosing down Walnut Street as church began at High Street, First Baptist and others downtown sites.

Muncie Gras remains the biggest party and fundraiser for DWMTWN development with a summer RibFest coming in August. The DWNTWN also has summer concerts at Canan Commons and other events like Freaky Fridays and First Thursdays. 


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