The Wakeman Firefighter’s Homecoming Festival will celebrate more than 60 years of tradition and fun this weekend.
“This Festival originated in the 1950s and our purpose is to keep the community tradition,” the Wakeman Firefighters Homecoming Festival Committee said on its Facebook page.
Keeping with that tradition, the festival remains simple, focused on just a few main events — a 5K, fireworks, fishing derby and parade.
The annual 5K run/walk will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Wakeman Fire Department. Registration is $15, which benefits the Western Reserve Cross Country teams. Awards will be given to the overall male and female runners, first place Wakeman Firefighter, first-place male and female Western Reserve graduates, and the first two finishers in each age group category.
Fireworks begin at dark.
Sunday’s activities kick off with the annual Fishing Derby from 9 to 11 a.m.
The event sponsored by the Wakeman Police Department and Friends, is located at the Village Red Cap Park. It's free and awards, snacks and poles will be provided at a first come, first serve basis. Previous years have seen an average of about 100 sign up and enjoy a morning with family by the water.
The annual parade will start at 1 p.m. at the fire station, run about an hour and end at the Red Cap Park/Lagoons. The cutest kids contest will follow.
Other additional activities throughout the weekend include kids’ water fights, kids’ firefighter’s obstacle course, kids’ pedal pulls, a presentation of the 2018 Wakeman Firefighters’ Royal Court, a pizza-eating contest, a car show and more.
Activities are scheduled to take place near the Wakeman Eagles, Lagoons/ Red Cap Park, Congregational Church and St. Mary’s Church.
Here’s a full schedule of events for the Wakeman Firefighter’s Homecoming Festival:
7-7:45 a.m.: Registration 5K and fun run/walk (fire station)
8 a.m.: 14th Annual 5K sponsored by the Western Reserve Cross Country Teams
6 to 10 p.m.: Eagles Celebration with live music and grilling by the Brownsbackers
6:30 p.m.: – Kids Fun (kids tent), balloons, face painting
7 p.m.: Royalty introductions and crowning of the 2018 Queen (kids tent)
7:45 p.m.: Movie Outside at the Congregational Church (Abbott Street and U.S. 20)
8 p.m.: Annual East of Chicago pizza-eating contest
9:30 to 10 p.m.: Fireworks at Red Cap Park (next to Wakeman Eagles)
8 to 11 a.m.: Lagoons Fishing Derby, sponsored by the Wakeman Police Department
9 to 11 a.m.: Royalty brunch; invitation and RSVP only
11:30 a.m.: Parade registration (Ruritan Club Lineup)
11 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Food vendors — Matus Enterprises, East of Chicago, Ice Cream, Dave Thomas BBQ
11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.: St. Mary’s Church café and carryout
Noon to 2 p.m.: Car show hosted by Zach’s Auto Detailing (St. Mary’s Church front lawn)
1 p.m.: Annual parade with the K96 announcers live (Main Street)
Kids fun activities after parade include waterfights with the firefighters and an obstacle course
2:30 p.m.: Parade winners announced/Royalty and firefighter introductions
2 or 3 p.m.: LifeFlight landing (Red Cap Park)
3 p.m.: Cutest baby contest
3:30 p.m.: Kids Pedal Pull
Fireman’s Ox Roast Festival
Shiloh’s festival, also taking place this weekend, will see no shortage of meat.
The 52nd annual Fireman’s Ox Roast will take place Friday and Saturday.
Bulk sales of meat, baked beans and potato salad will be available at the fire station, 11 N. Delaware St. The big kicker though will be the whopping 8,500 pounds of beef for sandwiches this festival is famous for.
Other food vendors will be selling hot dogs, baked beans, potato salad, cake, pie and more.
The festival is one the whole family can enjoy with kiddie rides set up around the area and a tractor pulls entertaining crowds both days.
A garden tractor pull will take place at 6:30 p.m. Friday, and the pedal tractor pull will be at 11 a.m. Saturday for young tractor drivers — those between 3 and 8 years old.
Live music will be performed by local artists from 8 to 11 p.m. both nights. All shows are free.