WINSLOW — The 23rd annual Winslow Family 4th of July Celebration will feature humorist Tim Sample, a giant parade, fireworks and new events including a children’s day in Halifax Park.

The five-day celebration brings tens of thousands of people to Winslow for live music, dancing, contests, socializing and more, according to Kevin Douglass, committee chairman.

“It’s one of the most exciting events that central Maine has to offer, as far as the length of it, the intensity of it, the overall atmosphere and the volume,” Douglass said Friday. “I’m extremely excited for this year.”

All events and entertainment scheduled for June 30 to July 4 are free; the only thing people pay for is food, he said.

Douglass, who has been a committee member for five years and was vice chairman last year, said a huge surprise is in store for patrons. On June 30, the first day of events, an announcement will be made between 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. in the park.

“It is probably the biggest announcement the Winslow Family 4th of July has ever made in regards to its entertainment,” he said. “It will change forever the way the Winslow Family 4th of July has its entertainment.”


He declined to give away any secrets except to say that it is expected to double or triple attendance at the event.

Meanwhile, he announced another new feature this year. Tickets are being sold for $1 each and will be tossed into a hat for a drawing. The person whose name is drawn will push the button that sets off the big fireworks display on the evening of July 4.

Tickets may be bought from committee members or at specific sites and times, including May 12 at Marden’s Surplus & Salvage and May 18 at Walmart, both in Waterville; and May 25 at Pleau’s Market in Winslow. People also may purchase cards for $10 each that offer discounts at many area businesses.

“One hundred percent of all proceeds go directly back to the Winslow Family 4th of July Celebration, to keep events free,” Douglass said.

He emphasized that many volunteers are needed to help with the event, and this year they are being asked to contact committee members now so that they can organize tasks better.

Anyone interested in volunteering is asked to call Douglass at 776-5678 or committee vice chairman Richard Perry at 877-5906, or go to the website and fill out a form.


Volunteers are needed for children’s events, parking, trash removal, band setups and security. Anyone with a particular talent may request a certain task.

“We can even put you to work cooking,” Douglass said. “If somebody is a good cook, come on down. We need all the help we can get.”

The celebration kicks off June 30 with a new craft fair from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Winslow Veterans of Foreign Wars building.

That Sunday also is “Country Sunday.” From 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Maine country music bands will perform in the park and a chicken barbecue will be hosted.

July 1 will feature Golden Afternoon in the park, from noon to 9 p.m. French and oldies bands will perform.

“It’s mainly dedicated to our seniors,” Douglass said.


“The 4th Idol” also will occur that night, featuring local talent performing before an audience, with judges determining winners. Prizes will be awarded.

“It always proves to be a very fun and entertaining evening,” Douglass said.

“Kids Day in the Park” kicks off July 2, with all sorts of vehicles, including limousines, ambulances, police and fire vehicles, dump trucks and farming equipment. Children may look inside them and hear about their functions from people who operate them.

Representatives from Calvary Farm in Clinton will be on hand to talk about how milk is produced.

“Hopefully, they’ll bring a cow so kids can see how milk makes it to the store,” Douglass said.

Clowns, bounce houses and other entertainment will be featured. That evening, professional wrestling by TV wrestlers will be hosted in the park.


On July 3, Maine comedian Tim Sample will perform two shows in the park.

“They’re absolutely free,” Douglass said. “It’s the gift to the community.”

A hot dog-eating contest in the park will be sponsored by Courtney’s Dogs. People may sign up at Courtney’s, on Bay Street, or by calling Nick Perry at 649-3620. Prizes are $100, $50, and $25 for first, second and third place winners, respectively. A whoopie pie-eating contest also will be held.

“We’re going to be having a lot of full bellies in the park that day,” Douglass said.

A traditional street dance will be held in the evening.

July 4, will feature the giant parade, whose theme this year is “America Strong.” Marching bands are needed. Anyone wanting to be in the parade is asked to consult the committee’s website.


The evening fireworks display, one of the largest in the state, includes $15,000 worth of fireworks, according to Douglass.

Bands will play all day in the park July 4. Scarab, which Douglass describes as a “100 percent Journey dedication band,” will perform from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“You can’t tell they’re not Journey,” he said.

Douglass, of Fairfield, owns Crazy Moose Gifts and Budget Vinyl Works. He said committee members work tirelessly and for months on end to bring the July 4 celebration to the community.

“I am so proud of each and every one of them for the time, dedication and effort they put into this event. It’s beyond words.”


Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]


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