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Smith River Festival honors agricultural roots

 (Triplicate file photo).
(Triplicate file photo).

By Cornelia de Bruin

Triplicate staff writer

Smith River will party Saturday as the community celebrates its third-annual Smith River Festival.

The event drew between 400-500 people last year.

Themed "A Farming Good Time," the event celebrates Smith River's roots and industries.

Bob Stanhurst has the honor of being Grand Marshal this year. Grandparents were to be honored by being chosen for the position, according to Kate Fischer, publicist for the sponsoring agency, Court-appointed Special Advocates.

"A community planning group decided the criteria," Fischer said.

Stanhurst satisfies both the farming theme and the community's wish to honor grandparents, she said.

He launched his first lily business in Brookings in 1946, and has lived in Smith River 51 years. The 85-year-old still works his farm to raise lilies and beef cattle, and spent the Fourth of July baling hay.

CASA sponsors the event to provide a family-oriented day that gives festival-goers a chance to enjoy a wide range of activities and events together.

The festival begins with an 8 a.m. breakfast, hosted by Smith River Fire Department, then continues with a day's worth of events including a children's parade, live entertainment, music and lawn mower races.

Not to be missed is the Firefighters' Competition, which features a game of water ball. Smith River Fire Department is defending its title this year. It won the Perpetual Trophy, a 2.5-foot tall redwood depiction of Jed the Bear and a fire hydrant, last year.

The game centers around a ball suspended 20 feet above the field by a 100-foot cable. Each team's goal is to drive the ball into the opponent's side and score.

Teams are composed of a goalie, nozzle man and mule. The goalie is armed with a hose to defend the score box. The nozzle man works the hose to push the ball toward the opposing goal while the mule moves the hose for nozzle man.

Expect a series of preliminary heats

during the day and some healthy competition. Each fire hose blasts water at 120 pounds per square inch.

Arthur and Ruby VanDeventer's art also is featured this year at the festival. The Smith River couple achieved fame for its work cataloguing the county's flora.

Children's art by Hannah Timoshenko, Alejandra Garcia, Jacob Gallenger, Sandor Ramirez, Vicente Ramirez, Mitzi Garcia and Savanna Stroop will be on display as well. A contest they competed in was sponsored by Smith River artists and the Wild Rivers Community. Local artists will offer classes to children and youth.

Entertainment includes Tony La Torre, The Renegade Line Dancers, tribal and cultural demonstrations and Happy Toes.

Walking tours and tours of Rowdy Creek Fish Hatchery also are offered.

Smith River Festival Schedule of Events

•8 a.m.-11 a.m. – Fire Department pancake breakfast

•10 a.m.-2 p.m. – Bait/fly casting

•10 a.m.-3 p.m. – Cake walks every hour

•10 a.m.-4 p.m. – Children's art event

•11-11:30 a.m. – Children's parade

•11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. – Tractor display

•Noon-2 p.m. – Bingo

•1-3:30 p.m. – Firefighters' games

•3-3:15 p.m. – Kids' bucket brigade

•3:15-3:30 p.m. – Firefighters' finals

•4-5 p.m. – Lawn mower races

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