The 41st Annual Logging Festival & Parade held on July 15th & 16th did not disappoint. The huge event that attracts so many different types of folks always has even more than you might imagine packed into two glorious summer days.

Starting on Friday and continuing the following day on Saturday, the Maine Forestry Museum (MFM) hosts a variety of vendors and artists. Each year there are some repeats like Brant & Cochran who sell axes, and new folks this year like David Espeaignnette of Phillips who sold beautiful hand-crafted lamps or Chelsea Croteau of Fresh Eats, who sold some delicious, hit the spot Korean summer noodles and salads.

By Saturday, the slow cooked-in-the-earth baked beans are almost ready and while people take turns stirring the pot, the day begins with a parade.

The theme this year was Artistry of the Forest and winners included Lily Stevens, Best Fitting Parade Theme, Ryan Brothers for Most Appropriate to Logging and Whites Logging for Best Loaded Truck.

However, most of the folks who set up their chairs along Main St. before the cut off time were just happy to wave to their friends. Everyone probably has their favorites. Is it Ron Haines with the long red wig driving the moose-headed skidder? Or maybe it’s the endurance of the pogo stick guy? I personally love seeing the kids scramble for candy and the parents scramble after the kids. And who was lucky enough to catch a Saddleback frisbee?

After the parade the folks made their way over to the museum grounds where new inductees to the MFM’s Hall of Fame were honored. This year MFM decided to honor families, or multi-generation loggers.


The four families inducted were

1) Wayne Durrell of Strong

2) Willard Ryan of Stratton and sons Mark, Marshall, Michael, Mitchell, Marty and Matt

 (To answer your question yes, he has daughters too! Molly, Mary and Millie)

 3) The three -generation active logging team of Dennis, Derek and Nathan White of Phillips

4) Nicols Brothers Logging of Rumford.


Afterwards, between enjoying the live band under the tent while eating sausage, biscuits and beans or enjoying a beverage in the beer tent, children could get a sampling of how to drive an excavator courtesy of Mike Cerminara Landscaping, or jump for joy in the bouncy house, ride the little logging train, or perhaps get their face painted.

So much to see and do. Each year the competitions are so thrilling to watch. I love the ax throwing and the underhand chop which is so scary to me… but then comes the hot saws, and I just can’t believe the strength and focus these feats require.

This year a new event was added called the Tea Boil. It doesn’t sound as exciting as it really truly is, but it is my new favorite event. Teams of two compete to build a fire and get a can of water boiling. It might not sound dangerous but the referee in attendance assured me how dangerous it is to have fire blown in your face… You have to see it to really understand.

So, that being said, hopefully I’ll see you next year!

(FOR DOZENS MORE PHOTOS visit our Rangeley Highlander Facebook Page)

When I think of logging I think of M&H. So when I see the M and the H I get to thinking. “Hey, you guys going to compete?” Haley response, “Every day.” LOL

Grateful for the shade and the refreshing beverage in the beer tent

O’Neils in the Ebby


Hailing from all over the country, this trail crew enjoying some time off the trail and post parade after I misled them… It’s a long story… but they forgave me

New Maine Forestry Museum president Scott Stevens and family (or entourage?) enjoying a brief break and some good eats

MFM Hall of Famers, The Ryan Family

Festival had plenty for the kids including face painting and yummy treats

One way to pop open a PBR

Children got a chance to try their hand at excavating courtesy of Mike Cerminara Landscaping. Seen here, Mario Cerminara showing me how it’s done.

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