The 2015 Hampden Children’s Day, set for Saturday, Aug. 15, has more events and energy behind it than it has had in many of its more than 30 years — and to think, in early 2015 organizers weren’t even sure it was going to happen at all.
“Initially, we were really nervous it might not happen. We had a really hard time getting volunteers,” said Hampden Children’s Day director Kathy Hughes. “But I think that push to let people know that we needed help was just what we needed to get people to step up. Sometimes people are shy about volunteering, but all you have to do is ask.”
This year, the event is bigger and better than ever, with a full slate of performers, games, activities and other fun stuff starting at 8:30 a.m. with the 5k and 1k foot races, and lasting until the last firework is set off at night. It also returns this year to its original location at Weatherbee Elementary, after a last year at Hampden Academy. As always, general admission to the festival is free, though food and individual activities may have fees associated with them.
In addition to all the daytime activities planned, there will be a variety of food vendors offering treats all day, from fair favorites like fried dough and cheeseburgers to desserts. There also will be raffle tickets available to purchase all day, for $5 each or 5 tickets for $20. The raffle features a first prize of Polar Kraft Fisherman Boat from Hamlin’s Marina, a second prize of 21-speed bicycle from Ski Rack Sports and a third prize of a barbecue grill from Home Depot. Presale tickets are available at Angler’s Restaurant and Skehan Recreation Center, both in Hampden, or at the Hampden Town Office.
The Children’s Day schedule is:
- 7:30-9:30 a.m., 1k Fun Run and the Craig Thomas McBean 5k race. Registration is $15 per person or $12 each for a family, and is open at 7:30 a.m., the 1k is at 8:30 a.m., 5k at 9 a.m.
- 9:30 a.m., Bike decorating at Reeds Brook Middle School, with helmet checks from Eastern Maine Healthcare and Adoptive and Foster Families of Maine.
- 10 a.m., Parade lineup at Reeds Brook Middle School.
- 11 a.m., Parade from Reeds Brook to Hampden Academy.
- Noon-4 p.m., Hampden Children’s Day activities at Weatherbee Elementary School, including a bounce house, obstacle course, field games, break a board, face painting, petting zoo, gun safety, touch a truck, fingerprinting and more.
- Noon and 2 p.m., Cake walk sponsored by Hampden Highlands Methodist Church, benefiting Malaria No More, Weatherbee grounds.
- 12:30 p.m., Top Hat Dancers, Weatherbee grounds.
- 12:15-3 p.m., Entertainment in the Weatherbee Gym, including magician Danny Baker, 12:15-1 p.m.; juggler Zach Fields 1:15-2 p.m.; and Zumba Kids with Andrea White, 2:15-3 p.m.
- 1 p.m., Hampden ATA Martial Arts, Weatherbee grounds.
- 1:30 p.m., Morgan Hill’s Star Dance Team from Morita’s School of Dance, Weatherbee grounds.
- 3:30 p.m., Pie eating contest, Weatherbee grounds.
- 7 p.m., Live music from kid’s band Don’t Feed the Animals, Weatherbee grounds.
- 8:30 p.m., Raffle winners announced.
- 9 p.m., Fireworks at the Weatherbee School Baseball Field.
For information on Hampden Children’s Day, call Janet Hughes at 768-1396.