LINCOLN, Maine — Craig McGraw likes to travel, but this is a staycation year for him and his family, which makes the 2010 Lincoln Homecoming Festival more enjoyable, he said.
“This is wicked good,” McGraw said Friday as he stood in the Main Street parking lot near Veterans Memorial Square with his son, 4-year-old C.J. McGraw. “This is a lot better than the other things we go to. They make it fun, especially for the kids.”
With half of the four-day town festival done as of midnight, Town Manager Lisa Goodwin and town events coordinator Shelly Crosby said they were encouraged by the size of the crowds seen so far.
“It’s going awesome,” Crosby said Friday. “It has exceeded our expectations.”
Thursday night’s Teen Street Dance at the square drew a record crowd for dances hosted by DJ Chuck Foster, Goodwin said, while vendors reported weekend-sized crowds on Thursday, Crosby said.
“It was really busy after 3:30 yesterday afternoon,” vendor Kaitlyn Caron, 16, of Exeter said Friday. “During the afternoon today, it was really sparse, but I expect it to pick up after dinner.”
The Monster Energy Drink display workers special-ordered a truckload of 30 cases of their drinks on Friday because of booming sales, Crosby said.
Today is expected to be busier still thanks to a fireworks display at Cobb Field that is expected to start at 9:15 p.m. after a concert at the field featuring Lenny & Mysfitz & Legendary Guitarist Mark “Blues” Miller gets under way at 6:30 p.m., Crosby said.
Another boost to the homecoming: The National Weather Service predicts clear skies today after some morning fog and temperatures peaking at 89 degrees. Sunday’s skies are expected to stay clear with temperatures dropping slightly.
Today’s highlights include:
- The annual Masons Homecoming Breakfast at the town’s Masonic Lodge on Main Street from 6 to 9 a.m.
- The Homecoming Children’s Parade starting at the town Public Safety Building on Adams Street at 10:15 a.m. and the “Just Cartooning Around” 2010 annual Homecoming Parade through downtown starting at 11 a.m.
- The Rise Above Extreme Entertainment BMX-Skateboarding Pro Show at 2 and 3 p.m. at Prince Thomas Park.
- Walker Bros. Circus at the Hannaford parking lot off West Broadway, which begins at 4:30 and 7 p.m.
- The annual Alumni Dinner at Mattanawcook Academy at 5 p.m.
Sunday’s events include:
- The PVH & Sprint for Life 5K Wellness Road Race at 8 a.m.
- The Marine Corps League Golf Tourney at Green Valley Golf Course in Enfield at 9 a.m.
- The 3-on-3 Basketball Tourney championships at Prince Thomas Park at 1 p.m.
The homecoming, which has gone by several names over the years, typically attracts people from as far away as Alaska. It features a fireworks show, parade, dances, barbecues, a road race, ATV runs, auctions, car shows and live music.
Organizers said they expect as many as 13,000 people — a record — to attend the events at Cobb Field, downtown, Veterans Square, Lincoln Memorial Library and Prince Thomas Park and other sites.
Budgeted by the town at $31,000, the event is Lincoln’s largest of the year. It usually costs slightly less than its budget, town officials said. As many as 75 volunteers helped make homecoming happen along with about 50 vendors selling their goods this year, Crosby said.
No significant public safety problems have been reported so far, police said.