May 24, 2018
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Snowfest in Norway canceled — but there’s still plenty of food

Leslie H. Dixon | Sun Journal
Leslie H. Dixon | Sun Journal
Equipment to create a 660-foot-long track for the Norway Trackers snowmobile club's snowmobile races this weekend on Lake Pennesseewassee was parked Friday after weather conditions forced cancellation of the event.
By Leslie H. Dixon, Sun Journal

NORWAY, Maine — Norway Trackers snowmobile club members are being asked to come hungry — very hungry — to their meeting Saturday night at the Little Red School House on Lake Pennesseewassee.

With the cancellation, because of weather conditions, of this weekend’s Snowfest on Lake Pennesseewassee, there’s a lot of food that needs to be eaten or donated quickly. The festival typically draws up to 1,000 spectators and participants each day.

“I bought 13 pounds of hamburger for my chili,” said Diane Gammon, president of the Norway Trackers. “Some of the girls baked huge quantities of whoopie pies.”

The club buys and gets large quantities of food donated for the event each year. Chili, three types of chowders, hamburgers, hot dogs, desserts such as cookies, brownies and bars, coffee and hot chocolate are sold at the food court set up on the ice. Some of the food preparation was well under way when the decision was made to cancel.

The event, which is the club’s largest fundraiser of the year, was canceled at 8 a.m. Friday after club members did a check on the ice in preparation for setting up the tents and other facilities used in the snowmobile races. Although the snow on the lake had been plowed Wednesday night, a lot of water was coming onto it Friday morning. With the potential slush and the weight of the water and machines on the lake, Gammon said the decision was made to cancel.

“It’s for the safety of everybody,” she said. “We don’t want to jeopardize anyone’s safety.” Drag races and radar runs were to be conducted Saturday and Sunday on the 660-foot track on the lake. An antique snowmobile show was slated for Sunday.

Gammon said the club had $600 to $700 in meat donated by the Lake Store but learned Friday that by the end of the day, the store owners were able to “disperse” that donation to recoup financial loses.

“We think we’re pretty fortunate,” Gammon said. “The meat was one of the high donations.” Some of it was to be used in a spaghetti sauce to feed the workers, many of whom took a vacation day from their jobs to help set up on the lake Friday.

The food includes many pounds of frozen haddock for fish chowder, all-natural pork and beef donated from Jerry’s Carpentry and Painting and Mike Cullinan of Cullinan Realty in Norway, cookies purchased from the school district’s DECA program and other food such as rolls and baked goods. Whatever is not eaten at the meeting Saturday night or taken home likely will be donated to local food pantries, Gammon said.

If the event is not rescheduled, she said, money from some 13 sponsors will be put in an account and used for next year’s events.

On Saturday night, when club members sit down to eat before their business meeting, Gammon hopes everyone is hungry.

“And bring Tupperware to take some home,” she said.

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