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September 7, 2016

 

EVENTS

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Lori and Scott Biccum`s float, Corny Crusaders, was packed with neighbourhood kids. Photo: Catherine Orth

 

Cornfest delivering family fun for 37 years

 

By Catherine Orth

The As communities across Ontario rediscover more and more the tradition of the home grown festival, Athens celebrated its 36th year of its Cornfest, with multiple generations now taking part in the much loved tradition. Simple pleasures of yesteryear, like bicycle decorating and a childrens' parade, corn on the cob and old time country music awaited the appreciative attendees. The intense heat of the Saturday, August 20th Cornfest did nothing to flatten spirits.

The children's parade kicked off events with delightful and humorous floats. Celebrating family was a popular theme and corn cousins was worked into several of the floats. Costumes for the most part were home made,and colourful and imaginative. There were many vendors, selling a tremendous variety of items from jewelry to fairy wands. Activities abounded. Ponies, Star and Firefly, gave kids free pony rides and their buddies, a young jersey cow, a little pig, a donkey and other small lovable furry friends were petted and admired. There was face painting, paintball, wall climbing, clowns, balloon animals, puppet shows, an auction, contests, and an antique car show. Happy the Chipmunk put smiles on young faces. Music was a plenty with Tom Wilson in his eighties playing old time country favourites. The talent show displayed a number of young performers including three year old Jasmine who sang her cover of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, as well as her older singing cousins Chloe and Lexi Watson. Claire Baker played guitar and sang, as did Taylor Healey.

Carleigh Fitzpatrick won first prize for her scarecrow and second prize went to Benjamin, Kaitlyn and Jeremiah Lalonde.

First prize float went to the Corn Fairies created by Heather Turcotte, her  daughter and friends. Second prize went to the Smid family for their float, Farm Life: Cobs Cows and Cousins. Tied in third place was Earl's Farm Feed family's float and the Corn Crusader submitted by Lori and Scott Biccum.

First prize for the parade walkers was Ali and Cameron Laronde as Ma and Pa Kettle Corn. Second prize went to the Corny Cousins: Parker Millar and Andrew, Sarah and Justin Leeder. Third prize went to Katrina and Kiarya Asseltine as Coronation Princess and Guard.

In the bikers category first prize went to Lucie Bezaire. Second prize went to Zoey Massey and third prize went to Willow Hart.

 The 50/50 draw of $2067.10 was won by Wayne Morrison.

Organizer Patsy Blanchard said that it cost well over $10,000.00 to put on Cornfest. It's done for families and children, is free and wouldn't happen except for the exceptional volunteers that show up every year and say, “Where do you want me, Pat!”

 

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Atop Pierre Bisson, truck driver for Gervais Towing & Recovery in Ottawa, stands by the capital city’s first 60-ton rotator truck, dedicated to the memory of company icon, Earl Sr. (1912-1961), at Athens Truck Show in Centennial Park on Saturday, August 20.

 Photo: Susan Janus                                                                                                

 

Antique trucks roll into Athens

 

By Susan Janus

 

The formerly cross-border Show & Shine of the Antique Truck Club of America, Upper Canada chapter, decided to host the annual all-truck—including antique, classic and newer model—show this year in Athens. That made sense when it was realized more Canadian trucks were registering in the last New York show than American trucks, and that local and US attendance at the Kingston, Ontario show was also poor. In the interest of attracting and sharing visitor support for both Athens events, the truck club decided to piggyback on Athens Cornfest, holding the show at Centennial Park during the same weekend as the festival. At around 2:00 p.m. on Friday, August 19, trucks began to roll into the park. Show hours were daily on Saturday and Sunday (August 21). In total, 170 trucks registered. A BBQ was held Saturday evening. Door prizes were provided by local businesses, suppliers, and represented companies.

Rotator truck

The truck (photo) is a Western Star 4900 SB (Super Body). Its rotator, rotates 360 degrees. That means, for example, that there is no need to position a tow truck to make a pickup; the rotator truck can move the load to the tow truck. The rotator truck specializes in recovery, including accidents and dangerous goods. “There are not a lot of things we can’t move,” said it’s sole operator, Pierre, a driver with 33 years trucking experience, who called the truck his “Christmas present”, having taken possession of it on December 27, 2015. To date at the show, 35 ton was the highest weight the rotator had lifted on the job in Ontario. The truck “works every day,” informed Pierre, who gave the current mileage as 25,000 kilometres. “I love [the] truck too much,” he admitted, “I sleep in there almost.”

 

 

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The Mural

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