Jenna Ziogas, education coordinator at the Dungeness River Audubon Center, talks about birds’ beaks with Elyse Kim of Sequim at the 2017 Family Fun Day in this file photo. The event will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Washington Street on Saturday. (Michael Dashiell/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Jenna Ziogas, education coordinator at the Dungeness River Audubon Center, talks about birds’ beaks with Elyse Kim of Sequim at the 2017 Family Fun Day in this file photo. The event will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Washington Street on Saturday. (Michael Dashiell/Olympic Peninsula News Group)

Sequim Irrigation Festival begins 124th year this weekend

SEQUIM — Organizers with the Sequim Irrigation Festival hope locals find comfort in the theme of the 124th edition of the celebration, “There’s No Place Like Home.”

The two-weekend annual event, and longest running consecutive festival in Washington, kicks off this weekend with Crazy Callen Weekend today though Sunday, followed by the Grand Finale Weekend May 9-12 — all to celebrate the history of the Dungeness River irrigating the Sequim-Dungeness area.

Deon Kapetan, festival executive director, said organizers hope to work even more closely with local service clubs and booster clubs and particularly with youth at this year’s events.

She said she anticipates more than 140 vendors.

In early April, organizers suffered a setback when someone broke into the festival’s royalty float and stole the “Wizard of Oz” themed float’s generator.

But word spread in the community and online, and festival organizers received an email from representatives of Tacoma Diesel who wanted to donate a generator.

Rich Graves with the company delivered the generator April 24.

“It was completely out of the blue,” Deon Kapetan said.

“That’s the power of social media.”

Kevin Kapetan, festival vehicle coordinator, said the Briggs & Stratton P2200 is very quiet and will help keep the float’s moving elements traveling down parade routes.

There’s no new information about the missing generator, Deon Kapetan said, but community support has been remarkable.

“I cannot tell you how many people have stopped me to offer me cash for a new generator,” she said. “I asked them to donate to one of the festival’s events and come enjoy them.”

Crazy Daze Breakfast

As is tradition, Crazy Daze Breakfast will kick off the festival with skits and songs by community members at 7 a.m. today in the clubhouse at Sunland Golf & Country Club, 109 Hilltop Drive, Sequim.

The name is homage to D.R. Callen, one of the pioneers of Sequim’s irrigation.

Tickets — $12 per adult and $8 per child with breakfast included — will be available at the door and in advance from First Federal Sequim branches, Sound Community Bank and the Sequim Visitors Information Center.

Costumes are encouraged. Award categories include Director’s Award, Royalty Award, President’s Award, Pioneer Award, Best Costume and Crazy Callen.

For more information, call Jennifer Horton at 360-808-0073.

Kids Parade

On Saturday, the day will begin with staging for the Kids Parade between 9 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. behind Washington Federal bank at the corner of Washington Street and Second Avenue.

Prizes will go to children with the best storybook character, pet entry, mini-floats, festival theme and best entry overall.

Awards will be handed out at the Arts and Crafts Fair entertainment stage on Cedar Street next to the Sequim Civic Center.

A preview of the operetta “Legally Blonde” will follows at 9:45 a.m. The parade is free to enter.

Family Fun Day

Family Fun Day will feature music and events from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. along Washington Street between Sequim Avenue and Second Avenue with dozens of vendors with family-friendly activities.

Performances are Aspire Academy at 11 a.m., Joyful Noise at noon, Mr. Silly Gilly at 1 p.m., crown making with the festival royalty at 1:30 p.m. and Bodystrong Tae Kwon-Do Academy at 3 p.m.. A cake walk will begin at 11 a.m. All booths are free.

Arts and Crafts Fair

Patrons can enjoy Sequim’s art side for three days during the Innovative Arts and Crafts Fair with a First Friday Art Walk Patron Preview from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. today, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Sequim Civic Center plaza at 152 W. Cedar St.

Organizers say the fair emphasizes reusability, repurpose and recycling, as well as fine art and one-of-a-kind crafts. Visitors are invited to enter creative works and/or vote during the Innovative Reuse Showcase and Contest. Artists can enter to win in the People’s Choice Awards in four categories: Wearable, Functional, Decorative, and Kids 15 and younger.

For more information, visit www.irrigationfestival.com or call Kelly at 360-461-3950. Creations can be dropped off tonight or early Saturday.

Demonstrations and entertainment at planned at the fair as well.

Entertainment on Saturday includes:Buttercup Lane at 10 a.m., Olympic Mountain Cloggers at 11 a.m., The Ryder Band at noon, Cool Jam at 2 p.m. and The Free Rangers at 3 p.m.

On Sunday, Jim Basnight Solo plays at 10 a.m., Caribe Steel Band at 11 a.m., Just in Tyme at 1 p.m., The Shaky Barbers at 2 p.m. and the Sequim High School Jazz Ensemble at 3 p.m.

Demonstrations on Saturday are Reuse and Recycle Creativity at 10 a.m., The Strait Turners at 11:30 a.m. and Olympic Driftwood Sculptors at 2 p.m.

On Sunday, they are Megan Davis at 10 a.m., Genaveve Starr at 10:30 a.m. and Brad Griffith at 1 p.m.

Other events

• Peninsula Driftwood Artists will host its 50th annual show at Pioneer Memorial Park, 387 E. Washington St., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The group will showcase driftwood pieces for display and sale along with a raffle.

• The First Friday Art Walk hosts various art openings and music displays in downtown Sequim from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. today. For more information, visit www.sequimartwalk.com.

• Sequim High School’s operetta “Legally Blonde” begins its three-week run at 7 tonight at the SHS auditorium, 533 N. Sequim Ave. Tickets are available at the door and online at shsoperetta.ludus.com/index.php.

Next week, The Grand Finale Weekend May 9-12 continues with multiple events including the carnival, Logging Show in its 30th year and the Grand Parade.

For more information, visit www.irrigationfestival.com.

________

Matthew Nash is a reporter with the Olympic Peninsula News Group, which is composed of Sound Publishing newspapers Peninsula Daily News, Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum. Reach him at mnash@sequimgazette.com.

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