HEUVELTON - A key organizer of the upcoming Labor Day weekend festival in Heuvelton said last year’s hillbilly-oriented theme proved to be so successful that the two-day event is back again by popular demand.
“We’re basically doing a mirror image of what we did last year,” said Richard Tacchino, an organizer of this year’s Labor Day weekend festival in Heuvelton. “Last year we did a regional hillbilly theme. This year we’re doing hillbilly holidays.”
The Heuvelton Hillbilly Holidays will begin Saturday at 7:15 a.m. with registration for a fun run at the former McAdam Cheese parking lot, followed by a kids fishing derby starting at 7:30 a.m. and a canoe race beginning in Rensselaer Falls at 9 a.m.
Other Saturday events planned in Heuvelton include a “baby contest” pitting the cutest tots in the area against each other, a quilt show, a duck race and live music at AmVets Post 1997 at 8 p.m.
Saturday’s activities will also include a full slate of events at Heuvelton Central School, to include a silent auction, raffles, a slide show and an alumni dinner in the school cafeteria for a price of $15.
On Sunday, the weekend gala continues with a craft fair at the Heuvelton Boat Launch beginning at 9 a.m., a quilt show, food stalls at the Bill Knowlton Park, a parade through Main Street featuring hillbilly-themed floats and marching bands, a cake and ice cream social at the United Methodist Church, lawn mower races at the boat launch at 5 p.m. and a fireworks display at dusk.
The cost for attending the lawn mower races is $3 per person. Pit passes are $5 and children under the age of 12 are free. Mr. Tacchino said the duck race and lawn mower races are two of the most popular events, as well as the parade, fireworks and the baby contest.
He said the rules for entering this year’s baby “cute off” are simple.
“Anyone that’s not a toddler, and is pre-walking can enter,” Mr. Tacchino said.
Last year’s Labor Day weekend festivities attracted more than 1,000 visitors to the village of Heuvelton, according to Mr. Tacchino, who said he expects an equal number of people to attend this year’s events. He said money generated will be used to sponsor next year’s Labor Day weekend festival.
“We roll the money right back into the organizing fund and use it for next year’s event,” Mr. Tacchino said.