The Great Americana Banana Split Celebration is August 23-25, 2019 in Downtown Latrobe, PA — where the banana split was invented 115 years ago!

Getting to Know the 2019 Chair

Before introducing someone new, I want to be sure to say, “Thank you,” to Michael Simons. Michael is the General Manager of SpringHill Suites Pittsburgh Latrobe and served at the event’s committe chair from 2015-2018. It was his leadership and management experience the Greater Latrobe - Laurel Valley Chamber of Commerce was looking for to fill the role. Whether it was running a meeting, seeking donations and sponsorships, recruiting volunteers, coming up with solutions to unexpected road bumps, or, yes, taking out trash, Michael was there to help the event succeed. So, again, THANK YOU Michael!

Filling the chairperson role for 2019 is Misty Markiewicz Enos. Misty is the owner of MPS Tax Services, who recently opened a new office in Latrobe. She previously worked as the Director of Communications for the Center for Organ Recovery & Education. I asked Misty a couple questions to get to know her a little better.

When did you have your first banana split, and what’s your favorite ice cream flavor?
I had my first banana split at the age of 15 while working at Barkley’s Dairy King in Derry, PA. I made it myself and it was wonderful! I’d say my favorite flavor is the vanilla, but with the chocolate topping.

What type of music do you like?
I like all types of music, but especially love listening to and supporting local bands. There is nothing better than spending an afternoon with family and friends listening to a live performance! It just so happens the Banana Split Celebration has a lot of entertainment so it will be a good opportunity to enjoy some favorites and hear some new groups.

Why did you agree to be the chair for this year and what event are you most excited for?
I have a lot of pride in my community and the amazing history that comes with living here. I own a local business and I wanted to be a part of something as special as the celebration. In my previous career I was the Director of Communications for a large non-profit. I can use my knowledge and experience to help make the festival a special weekend for all. Plus I have known the chamber president, Briana, since high school and it would be hard to say no to helping her.

People should attend the celebration for a variety of reasons. It will be a fun weekend to enjoy with family and friends and a great way to experience the history of Latrobe. Plus, there is going to be so many cool events and musical acts to enjoy. There will be fun for all.

When you’re not working, what do you enjoy doing? What makes you unique?
My husband and I love to travel, so we travel as much as we can in our spare time. We love spending time with family and our Golden Retriever Maverick, he is an angel.

What is unique about me is my genuine positive outlook and ability to make people feel good. I love to make people happy and try to accomplish that in some way everyday.

Last question, is there something that you expect will be challenging about planning the event?
The most challenging part for me will be the learning curve. I tend to blaze into these types of events and hit the ground running, but for this first year, I have to slow down and understand the goals and ins and outs of what has been done in the past. I am very much looking forward to it though, as I love a challenge.

Thanks Misty for taking time to answer a few questions, especially since its right in the middle of the busiest time of the year for your business. I’m looking forward to working together to develop this year’s event.

🍌 Isaac