‘Winterfest without the winter’ has fun, learning

Mon, 02/03/2020 - 8:45am

    “You might just have to take two, if they’re stuck together,” Dave Sawyer told Recreation Programmer Chelsea Taylor as she had one pancake in the tongs and a hanger-on at Saturday’s breakfast at Winterfest at Wiscasset Community Center. Taylor and fiancé Ben Richards were returning from a hike she gave in lieu of snowshoeing, lost to mild weather. 

    Sawyer and fellow masons from Lincoln Lodge in Wiscasset were volunteering in the kitchen.

    “It’s a bummer” to not have the snowshoeing, but she might hold another trek later this winter with snowshoes from Midcoast Conservancy, Taylor said. Saturday’s hike had about six takers, she said.

    Snow or no, Aquatics Director of 22 years Lori LaPointe said she still enjoys Winterfest every year. “Absolutely. I love it. You get to see all the community members and we have the big pool party.” The party and most of Winterfest went on snow-free. Ice skating and snowmobiling were off, Parks and Recreation Director Duane Goud said.

    “I do wish there was snow,” Goud said about an hour into Saturday’s activities. He said he might look at moving Winterfest a little later next winter to raise the chances of snow cover. Plus, then youth basketball would be over, freeing up the gym, he said.

    Trivia Night, Winterfest’s kickoff Friday night, got a good turnout of close to 60 people, Goud said. Winners Taylor later shared with Wiscasset Newspaper were the Osmond family, first place; the Bickford family, second; and the Lincoln family, third. Taylor said Wood Field Farm’s free horse carriage rides Carl M.P. Larrabee Insurance sponsored were a big hit Saturday.

    In the lobby, Wiscasset’s Russell and Pat Cloutier were repeat volunteers on sales in a “Chuck a duck” raffle. And Atlantic Partners EMS Traffic Safety Educator Rick Tarr of Boothbay Harbor was hoping for takers on his offer to event-goers to get behind the wheel of a simulator about texting while driving. Looking outside and smiling, he said, “It’s a Winterfest without the winter.”

    Daryna Yesyp, 16, of Ukraine was volunteering at her first Winterfest at WCC. Studying at Wiscasset Middle High School this school year, she is about six months into her Wiscasset stay, she said. Her hometown is bigger than Wiscasset, by about 40,000 people. “I really like it, Wiscasset. Everybody knows each other,” she said. Fellow Winterfest volunteer Colleen Gilliam of Wiscasset manned the senior center entrance with her at the breakfast. Gilliam, newly on the Cooper-DiPerri Scholarship Committee, likes its cause of helping provide access to the department’s programs.