WILTON— After 20 years of being the key organizer for the 28th Annual Wilton Blueberry Festival, Shannon Smith says this weekend's festivities could be the best yet.
Her biggest coup has been lining up an appearance by the Halifax-based, internationally-known, singer-songwriter Dave Carroll, who will perform with his band in a free concert at 7:15 p.m. Friday, Aug. 6 at the Western Maine Expo Center on Weld Road.
His career took off after the release of “United Breaks Guitar,” a music protest video aired on YouTube about his experience with United Airlines.
“His show will be awesome. He has a huge following and I had to line him up over a year ago,” Smith said.
The 16-page festival brochure has pages listing the schedule of events that includes bazaars, games and activities, a giant two-day crafts fair, demonstrations, tours, food, and live entertainment scheduled in venues throughout downtown.
For information, including locations of park-and-ride lots and free shuttle service, go to www.wiltonbbf.com. For information, call Smith at 778-4726.
The closing event will be a 45-minute fireworks display over Wilson Lake at dusk Saturday. Smith said the pyrotechnics company hired this year puts on an electronically, rather than manually, controlled display that will generate more explosions of colored lights, smoke, and noise than in the past.
“I am darn excited. We got the job done and it is all coming together. It has been a team effort with the help of the town's police, fire, and highway departments and lots of others. We couldn't have done it without them,” she said.
Some festival highlights:
On Friday and Saturday, Main Street will be packed. There will be craft and food sales, a dunk tank, climbing rock wall, bounce tent, boat tours and blueberry bazaars. Many sites will sell homemade blueberry baked goods, there will be pick-your-own at the Blueberry Farm on Main Street, and restaurants and shops will have specials.
Over 140 vendors, non-stop entertainment and the Wilton Library book sale will be at the Western Maine Expo both days.
On Friday, chicken barbecue will be available at the Congregational Church from 5 to 6:30 p.m. and lobster rolls, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at St. Luke's Episcopal Church.
Children's games and face painting Friday and Saturday at Kineowatha Park, with the annual Baby and Toddler Derby at noon and antique tracotor pull at 1 p.m. on Saturday.
Blueberry Festival 10-K and kids' One-Miler races are Friday evening with registration starting at 4:30 p.m. at Kineowatha Park.
On Saturday, a blueberry pancake breakfast under the tent at the town square will be served from 6 to 10 a.m.
Lineup for the 9 a.m. parade is 7 to 8:30 a.m. Saturday at the Expo, with over 100 entrants expected including Kora Shriners' clowns and mini-vehicles. Registration deadline for entries is 8 a.m.
The children's doll carriage and bicycle parade line-up starts at 8 a.m. at Franklin Savings on Main Street..
Blueberry Cook-Off and chili contests at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Expo followed by free public tastings.
The firemen's muster with area fire departments will be at 1 p.m. on Main Street.
At 6:30 p.m., the parade of boats kicks of on Wilson Lake followed by the fireworks at 8:45 p.m.
Free Dave Carroll Band concert, parade, craft fairs, fireworks, activities, food – all on tap for 28th Annual Wilton Blueberry Festival
For a complete listing of events and information about the two-day, 28th Annual Wilton Blueberry Festival Friday and Saturday, Aug. 6 and 7, visit www.wiltonbbf.com.