By Charlie Bermant
Peninsula Daily News
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The longtime organizer had retired, and no one else had picked up the challenge for the annual Uptown Street Fair and Parade.
The event was resuscitated by Main Street Executive Director Mari Mullen, who contacted the Port Townsend Arts Guild and the Kinetic Skulpture races, cobbling together an event that promises to continue a local tradition that has gone on for 24 years.
“We just got involved last Thursday,” said Janet Emery, who manages the kinetic races every year.
“Everyone thought that it was canceled,” she said.
“The impression was that when [former organizer] Lisa [Doray] retired that it wasn't going to happen this year,”
Emery and Selina Espinoza are taking care of the myriad details for the event set from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the blocks surrounding the center of Port Townsend's Uptown at the intersection of Lawrence and Tyler streets.
For those from 'around here'
Port Townsend has many festivals that draw tourists. This festival is decidedly local.
“This is for the people who are around here,” said Christel Hildebrandt, who owns the Uptown Pub & Grill.
“All the locals show up. People that you haven't seen all year come out of the woodwork.”
The day's highlight is the Very Local Parade, which is sponsored by the Kinetic Skulpture Race and is a dry run for that event, which this year will be Oct. 3-5.
“I've got a lot of my peeps together for this, and it will be a really great parade,” Emery said.
“Anyone can join in, but I hope we get at least 15 entries so we can give away all these trophies that we are making.”
One difference this year is the absence of abstract and ornate trophies created by Jeanne Moore of Potpourri Northwest Interiors.
Like Doray, Moore has retired from her involvement with the event.
As a result, Emery and Espinoza are decorating 15 plastic pinwheel flowers that will be awarded as prizes for whatever category the judges come up with.
Parade at 1 p.m.
The parade will begin at 1 p.m. in front of the East Jefferson Fire-Rescue Station at 701 Harrison St. and head down Lawrence Street toward Aldrich's Market at 940 Lawrence St.
The parade is open to anyone who shows up, except for political and religious floats, which are not allowed.
The Port Townsend Arts Guild Arts & Craft Fair takes place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tyler Street.
Art activities for children of all ages will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the recreation center lawn.
The street fair operates in conjunction with the Port Townsend Farmers Market, which is open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tyler Street between Lawrence and Clay streets.
A belly dancing presentation and sideshow acts also are scheduled.
Attendees can picnic on the recreation center lawn with food from local vendors and farmers.
A schedule of live music is set:
■ 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Young Fiddlers.
■ 11 a.m. to noon — Port Townsend Summer Band.
■ Noon to 1 p.m. — Porto Alegre.
■ 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. — Rose Street Ramblers.
■ 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. — Side of Blues.
■ 4:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. — Tuba and accordion with Chuck Easton and George Radebaugh.
Sponsors are Uptown Pub & Grill, Wallyworks, Port Townsend Main Street Program, Uptown Nutrition, Printery Communications, Uptown Fabrics, Potpourri NW Interiors, PT Kinetic Sculpture Race and First Baptist Church.
Those wishing to volunteer to help with decorating, setup or tear-down should phone the Port Townsend Arts Guild at 360-774-6544.
For more information, visit www.porttownsendartsguild.org or www.ptmainstreet.org.
Jefferson County Editor Charlie Bermant can be reached at 360-385-2335 or firstname.lastname@example.org.