Old Mill Park will host 14th annual festival Aug. 1
BY Bill Tremblay, The Independent

July 02, 2009

CAMPBELLFORD — Campbellford’s Waterfront Festival is expanding to include more space and activities for visitors.

Campbellford Waterfront Festival organizers Tom Kerr and Vicki Clarke announced changes and additions to the 14th annual event, being held Saturday, Aug. 1, in Old Mill Park.

Campbellford Waterfront Festival organizers Tom Kerr and Vicki Clarke announced changes and additions to the 14th annual event, being held Saturday, Aug. 1, in Old Mill Park.

The Campbellford Business Improvement Area (BIA) announced the details of the 14th annual festival on Friday, June 26. Old Mill Park will host the festival on Saturday, Aug. 1, starting with the Rotary pancake breakfast at 8 a.m. and closing with fireworks at 9 p.m.

“I can see waterfront really taking off,” festival chair Tom Kerr said. “Every year there’s more and more and more.”

The area covered by the festival’s event has been increased to include Grand Avenue, from Bridge Street to Canrobert Street South. Mr. Kerr said the closure of Grand Avenue will help increase pedestrian safety.

“No matter what, people are crossing that street anyway,” Mr. Kerr said. “Opening the street is something we’ve been trying to do for two years.”

Seating along the water has been redesigned to allow more spectators to get a better view of races and belly flop contest. The cardboard boat races are also changing. This year all boats entered in the contest must be made at the event with materials provided by the festival.

“In the last four or five years we have had the same four or five guys enter with the same four or five boats,” Mr. Kerr said. “We thought we would go with using only instant boats.”

Contestants will be provided with three sheets of heavy duty 8’x4′ cardboard, duct tape and plastic to build their vessel.

“You take your incentive, creativity and warped mind and go from there to create your own boats,” Mr. Kerr said.

Mr. Kerr said watching the construction of the boats provides a portion of the contest’s entertainment value.

“We have seen some tremendously lousy boats over the years,” Mr. Kerr said.

Zach the Magician, a student from Campbellford District High School, has also been added to the festival line-up.

“His personality shines,” Mr. Kerr said. “He is a very shy lad, but when he starts with his magic tricks you can see him coming to life.”

Campbellford’s downtown merchants manage the festival, but they are not looking to profit from festival visitors.

“They are putting on a festival to celebrate,” Mr. Kerr said. “Campbellford is alive.”

Festival co-chair Vicki Clarke said volunteers are needed to help with the races, security, children’s activities and post-event clean-up. Musicians are also needed to perform on the festival stage throughout the day.

“It is very important that we have volunteers to make this a big success,” Ms. Clarke said. “We really do need those extra bodies.”

To volunteer contact Lorol Nielsen at (705) 653-2726 or email lorol@sympatico.ca.

Schedule of events

– Rotary pancake breakfast, 8-10 a.m.
– Registration and instant boat kits available, 9 a.m.
– Rebels beach volleyball, 9 a.m.
– Music in the park, 9 a.m.
– Belly Flop Contest, 10 a.m.
– Opening ceremonies, kids events and ice cream eating contest, 11 a.m.
– Kayak races, 11 a.m.
– Canoe races, noon
– Tube races, 1 p.m.
– Cardboard boat races, 2-4 p.m.
– Double ducky derby dash, 4 p.m.
– Awards ceremony, 4:30 p.m.
– Live music in the gazebo, 7-10 p.m.
– Fireworks, 9 p.m.