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Monson’s Summer Festival returns Saturday

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MONSON — An event-packed day for all the family will be at the 2018 Monson Summer Festival on Saturday, July 21.

There will be loads for kids to do this year at Monson’s Summer Festival. The big draw will be the Anything Floats Race. Organizers are expecting seven different innovative entrants who are eagerly designing and fabricating their boats as you read this. Boats must be constructed of materials not originally intended for a boat and propulsion has to be by non-mechanical means only. Wood, plastic, cardboard, duct tape, rope, string, paint, wax, cloth and glue are all approved materials. The race registration is at 2 p.m., behind the post office.

The Lake Hebron ‘Slate Man Triathlon’ kicks off the day’s events at 8 a.m. outside the Monson’s Gym. Teams consisting of three people, aged 16 and above cost $30 to enter and individuals cost $10. Pre-register teams at the Monson Town Office.

The free kids games, such as the three-legged race, will be from 9-11 a.m. at the ball field behind the gym. The balloon figures and face-painting will take place by the bouncy tent near the bandstand.

There will be a craft fair on Monson’s Main Street which begins at 9 a.m. (call 997 3268 for more details) and Douglas Coffin, a master carver will be offering stone carving demonstrations outside the AC Gilbert building all day. Learn how to carve letters in slate. Eastern Maine Wood-turners will also be doing turning demos from 1-4 p.m. at the event tent at Lakeshore House.

Have you discovered the 13 stunning 30- by 40-inch black and white images featuring Monson and its immigrant community at the Atrium in the Monson Arts Center? The photographs were taken by Frank Sherburne from 1890-1910 and Leon Wilkins from 1910 on. The 3,000 glass plate negatives from which these selected images were printed, are owned by the Monson Historical Society. The society museum will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and features Monson Narrow Gauge Railroad items, military and Monson Academy memorabilia, slate quarry items and a gift shop.

Also at Monson’s Arts Center the Monson Historical Society will host the award-winning novelist Paul Doiron, author of “The Precipice” who will give a talk at 11 a.m. At noon there will be pottery demonstrations at the Monson Pottery Workshop. Adjacent to the pottery workshop is the new improved location for Monson’s Public Library. The library will hold a bake and book sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. as well as an artisan’s raffle.

This year there will be live music at the Lakeshore House and a DJ all day at Spring Creek BBQ plus traditional Finn dances accompanied by a live band at the Finn Hall in the evening. The Finnish Farmers Club of Monson was established in 1935 for dancing and socializing.

Having saved the best for last, 9 p.m. sees the “Exploding Lights” fireworks at the ball field behind the gym.

Pick up a schedule at the Monson Town Office or local area businesses. For more information, please contact the town office at 997-3641.

Contributed photo
WHATEVER FLOATS THEIR BOATS — The Anything Floats Race will again be part of the annual Monson Summer Festival on Saturday, July 21. Registration for the contest featuring homemade watercraft going across the Lake Hebron cove will be at 2 p.m. behind the post office.

Contributed photo
PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBIT — The photo of two “Beguiling Couples” was taken in Monson approximately 100 years ago. The image is part of a 30- by 40-inch historical black and white photography show taking place in the Monson Art Center.

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