Great weather, crowds draw festival to a close
Rockland — Contrary to what had been forecast, it was the great weather that drew the masses to the 67th annual Maine Lobster Festival making it a success in the eyes of many, according to Festival President Chuck Kruger.
Kruger said he has received many great comments about the five days of events.
"We were up overall for the year a little over 1 percent," said Kruger, in gate, food and merchandise sales.
"That puts us in a good position for next year," said Kruger.
Kruger added the new saying in the tourism industry these days is "flat is the new up."
Over the course of the five days, 14,086 pounds of lobster were cooked compared to last year's 16,890 and an additional 1,152 pounds of lobster meat went into rolls, wraps and salads — up from 864 pounds last year.
"We certainly held our own," said Kruger, despite some obstacles. Kruger said the new management team learned a lot and had lots of fun.
Gate sales were a little off from last year about 1.4 percent, according to Kruger, who noted food sales were up about $22,000 over last year.
Recognized by the panel of judges during the Big Parade this year were:
Antique Auto - Old Miss Crusty 1929; Band - Bay Winds North; Commercial - Wells Fargo; Marching - Coast Guard Eagle Cadets; Non-Profit - Owls Head Baptist Church; Novelty - Ben Perry; and Theme - Little Learners.
Diaper Derby winners
Sixteen youngsters competed in the Diaper Derby. Finishing in first place was Mason Catalano of Rockland with a time of 22 seconds and second place was Cora Arteaga of Thomaston at 27 seconds.
Cod Fish Carry winners
Fifteen brave souls took their stab at carrying a floppy, slimy cod fish to the boat and back to the netting. Finishing first for second-grade age was Lexi Herbst of Kansas City, Mo. with a time of 1:13.06. Third-grade winner was Jackelyn Kelly of Rockland with a time of 1:08.84. And fourth-grade winner was Jacob Roberts of Friendship with a time of :38.12.
Lobster-eating contest winners
Eleven hungry competitors took their best shots at devouring a lobster in the fastest time. First place with a time of 54 seconds was Zach Spearing of Owls Head. Declan Lally of Warren took second place with a time of 1:15.
Children's Parade winners
Youngsters up to age six had their own parade Sunday, Aug. 3 around the festival grounds. First place winner was Bella Knight of Owls Head; second went to Nora and Bailee Fish of Rockland; and third went to Lucian and Sean Honkonen of Rockland.
Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.