Bald Eagle Festival had lots to enjoy
Another Bald Eagle Day is in the books. By midday on Saturday, it was a bright warm humid one. That didn’t stop a few thousand people from coming into town to take in a parade and join in the fun.
Local firefighters, deputies and search and rescue volunteers were well represented in the parade as they showed off their freshly washed fire engines and fast cars. Children sat on curbs waiting for the continual shower of candy coming their way as parade entrants passed. There were clowns and cheerleaders and baton twirlers. Veterans marched down the hill followed by appreciative claps and cheers from the crowd. Beautiful old cars shared the road with logging trucks and tractors and a phalanx of ROVs and UTVs. There were goats and horses and chickens, boy scouts, 4-H’ers, fair princesses and loggers. PFLAG was well represented, as well as the Norse Hall and the Columbia River Ranch and Cattle Company.
After the parade, people headed down the hill to join the crowd and visit with friends and family. Individuals checked out vendor’s wares while enjoying ice cream, caramel popcorn, hot dogs and elephant ears. People complained about the humidity and the loud-but-good-band. Children had their faces painted and played laser tag or enjoyed tours of the firehouse and took train rides. Some stopped inside local businesses to get away from the heat.
A couple boys were seen in faux combat with wooden swords they had purchased from a vendor. Fair princesses mingled and tried to raise funds for the fair.
At 4 p.m. a waterball competition took place on Main Street in front of the lumberyard. Local fire departments competed in a game comparable to tug of war, but with water, hoses and a ball hanging from a line. Witnesses who braved the sun were rewarded now and again with a soft mist of cool water.
Beer gardens opened at 6 p.m. and not long after, a country band, Jones and Fischer played to the crowd. The weather shifted and cooled a little and brought with it a little rain.
At 10 p.m., the fireworks began. That wasn't a given, for a member of the Wahkiakum Chamber of Commerce said the Chamber on Friday had to fire the fireworks contractor initially engaged to put on the show because the contractor hadn't completed required paperwork. The Chamber was able to find another contractor who put the show together at the last minute.