Wilton’s red, white and blueberry

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WILTON – This parade lived up to the hype and then some.

The 26th Annual Wilton Blueberry Festival parade proved once again that it has to be the longest annual parade in the state. Running nearly two hours long over a mile and a half course through
town, this year’s theme of honoring EMTs and fire fighters featured plenty of gleaming red fire trucks.

Charlie Woodcock of the Healthy Community Coalition, dressed as a healthy bowl of blueberries and marched with other fruits and vegetables in the Blueberry Festival parade Saturday.

Along with the trucks from area departments was the deep blue of blueberry-themed everything sprinkled in the parade and among the spectators.

Blue balloons anchored with strings floated above the crowd, but every once in a while one would escape to the clouded skies above.

The Wilton Lions Club’s annual blueberry pancake breakfast served up before and during the parade in the center of town featured a continual long line of hungry festival attendees. Lions Zone Chairman Bruce Jellison said 600 meals were served, which is “better than average,” he said.

No one knew exactly how many years the festival breakfast has been going on, but Bill Fletcher said this was his 18th year of cooking for it.

A thick crowd lined Main Street to watch Lewiston’s Kora Temple members race around in their tiny cars, trucks and scooters while performing various maneuvers that often brought applause.

Drum and bagpipes marched with politicians, church groups, businesses, antique cars and fire trucks.

Festival chairwoman Shannon Smith rode as the last parade entry, just behind “Trunk Monkey,” who noted at the end of the parade he must have given out 250,000 bananas along the mile and half route.

Shannon Smith, chair of the Blueberry Festival Parade committee, gives the Trunk Monkey his marching orders.

Benjamin  Drumm, 6, and  Matthew Drumm,7, of Wilton, built cardboard fire trucks over their bikes, in keeping with the parade’s theme of honoring firefighters and EMTs.

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