They rocked and they rolled with not a care in the world.

Such was the relaxed mood Thursday for the opening of the eighth annual Crusaders For A Cause carnival held in the Palmerton Borough Park.

The absolutely glorious weather made for a fantastic start to the four-day event, said Christina Obrecht, president of Crusaders For A Cause.

"It's beautiful today," she said. "It should pick up after dark, and definitely tomorrow [Friday]."

For sure, one of the featured attractions was Kids Ride Special Day, which saw a plethora of children take advantage of the rides discount.

New to the carnival this year was the Cobra ride, which Larry Zawaly, treasurer of the organization, said was "attracting a lot of attention."

Just a little further across the park, children could be seen playing a whole host of games.

Austin Rehrig, 3, of Palmerton, was among them as he tried his luck at the Shark Tank.

Leanna Altemose, who accompanied Austin and his father, Ryan Rehrig, said the family enjoyed their time at the carnival.

"It's nice, and the kids like it," Altemose said. "They have enough for kids to do."

While the children stayed busy between the rides and games, adults sat on benches as they listened to live entertainment at the bandstand.

Wicked Beaver, from the Lehigh Valley, performed on Thursday, as part of the entertainment headlined by Prodigy Studios of Palmerton.

The carnival continues in the borough park today from 5-11 p.m., Saturday, 5-11 p.m., and Sunday, 2-7 p.m..

There is live entertainment each day, as well as crafting vendors, food vendors, and Christina's Reptile & Animal Sanctuary.

Also new this year was Horses 4 Hope Equestrian Center, of Bangor, courtesy of owner Alyana Callaway.

Today's entertainment is scheduled to see performances by the Prodigy Studio Band, as well as Shoot For Noon.

Saturday's entertainment is the Senile Delinquents and Governing Murphy. The band AKA Wing Nut, will perform on Sunday, which is also Kids Ride Special Day.

Crusaders For A Cause was incorporated in May, 2009, under the Non-Profit Corporation Law of 1988 as amended, to help raise money for various charities.

Those charities include Relay For Life/American Cancer Society, St. Jude's Children's Hospital, March of Dimes, and many other community causes or projects.

For more information on Crusaders For A Cause, visit www.crusaders4acause.mysite.com.