This year the Festival will be held in memory of Lt. Col. Michael Backus, for his dedication to country and community.

“The Festival is about bringing people together,” Shannon Smith, chairperson of the Festival said. “It is good for our community and especially helps our local businesses.”

Always held the first Friday and Saturday of August, the festival, started in 1982, has become one of the top attractions of the area, drawing thousands of spectators to its spectacular parade on Saturday and this year’s featured Friday event, Mama’s Wranglers, an award-winning, old-time western band and champion cloggers. The show is free and open to the public.

Also, on tap this year will be the Bill Yates Memorial Race, a 10K, 5K Road Race and 1-Mile Family Fun Run, in memory of Dr. Yates.

“The race in memory of Dr. Yates will be very special,” Smith said. “All 13 of his children are expected to run in the race.”

A fireworks display from the boat launch will bring the Festival to a conclusion Saturday evening at dusk.

For more information about the Wilton Blueberry Festival visit

One of the fastest growing attractions in Franklin County is Rt. 4 Raceway where owner Tim Ladd has established a one-third-mile dirt race track and mud run in Strong. Mud Runs are slated for Saturdays, Aug. 17 and Sept. 14. Runs start at 11 a.m.

“We started racing four years ago,” Ladd said. “We have been trying to develop something that is fun and safe for the whole family. The mud runs have become very popular and right now I think we are the only dirt race track in Maine.”

Races on the dirt track are on Sundays, Aug. 11 and 18 and Sept. 8 and 15 with plenty of action in four- and eight-cylinder heats and feature races.

For more information about Rt. 4 Raceway visit

Maine Huts and Trails offers four unique hiking opportunities with overnight accommodations available. Stop at Maine Huts and Trails, 496 Main Street in Kingfield or call 207-265-2400 for availability and booking.

“Our trails are for everyone and follow along rivers and valleys,” Katy Brackett, sales and service manager said. “They are designed for family hikes with each hut having its own trail head.”

Maine Huts and Trails is a nonprofit organization that manages a system of four backcountry lodges and more than 50 miles of trails in Western Maine. It offers off-the-grid hut-to-hut adventures coupled with comfortable and friendly accommodations.

“We have lunches available at each hut, where there are always caretakers available,” Brackett said. “Anyone wishing to stay overnight at the huts, should make sure they call for reservations. All of the huts utilize the green energy system.”

Maine Huts and Trails provides breathtaking possibilities for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels, ages and interests. Hiking, mountain biking or paddling, swimming, and fishing are options during the summer and fall seasons.

At night, enjoy delicious home-cooked meals prepared with locally sourced organic ingredients, warm, comfortable beds and hot showers

Flagstaff, Poplar, Grand Falls and Stratton Brook Huts are open for the 2013 summer and fall season.

Maps and information are readily available at the main office in Kingfield, or visit

Here’s a look at upcoming local festivals and happenings in Franklin County:

August 2-3: The 31st annual Wilton Blueberry Festival

August 11-18: Phillips Old Home Days — highlight is the Friday parade

August 15: Blueberry Festival and the Rangeley frog jumping contest

August 17: Oquossoc Day races and events featuring a dog show

September 12-13: Crossroads International Celtic Festival, Skye Theatre, South Carthage

September 18: Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haass, master Scottish fiddler and cellist, Skye Theatre

September 28: Apple Pumpkin Festival, Livermore Falls

Staff at the Looney Moose Café, in Eustis, serve a mean breakfast and lunch menu to prepare hikers for long walks up surrounding mountain trails.

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