Fun For All Ages

PARKERSBURG – Along with carnival rides, entertainment and fair food, the Parkersburg Homecoming Festival is about activities for all ages.

“For at least the last 12 years, we have been doing the coloring contest,” said Angie Northcraft, area director for Captain D’s restaurants, which sponsors the children’s activity. “The kids always seem to be excited to join us.”

The contest is part of the annual Kids Fest activities for Homecoming, with the goal of giving younger children the knowledge they are a strong part of the community, Northcraft said.

While there are a number of children’s-based activities each year, the coloring contest is the oldest.

“The contest has been going on for so long that it has become a Homecoming staple,” Northcraft said. “We have families that get really excited for the coloring contest because the older kids have had so much fun doing it that they get their younger brothers and sisters excited about being part of it, which is really cool.”

This year saw kids show up as much as two hours early, Northcraft said.

“Some kids were here as early as 11 (a.m.), simply because they wanted to miss the rush that happens after the parade,” she said.

Between 75 to 125 kids, up to 12-years-old, were expected to fill Bicentennial Park for the contest while more were expected at the Pressley Ridge annual Ice Cream Challenge behind the coloring contest and to be entertained by the Steve Dixon Magic Show.

For the adults, this year’s annual Corn Hole Tournament was expected to be the best, according to organizer Ted Dillon, co-owner of Mountain State Corn Hole.

“In the five years we have done this, we usually average about 20 teams,” Dillon said. “Last year, we had 16 teams, but expect 30 this year.”

Mountain State Corn Hole, based in Vienna, has organized the tournament for the past five years, since the Homecoming committee requested their aid, Dillon added.

“Every year is a little different, but this year looks to be our biggest,” he said. “We’ve had a lot of interest.”

Today’s schedule of activities and entertainment include:

* 10 a.m.: Kids Fishing Derby

* 10:30 a.m.: South Parkersburg Baptist Church services

* Noon: Pretty Baby Contest (Ages 12 months-3 years) (Point Park Amphitheater)

* Noon-4 p.m.: Model Railroad Club Open House (601 Green St. Rear)

* 1 p.m.: Soap Box Derby (Market Street); Tiny Tot Trot (Stadium Field at Parkersburg High School)

* 1-5 p.m.: 13th annual Johnny Staats Bluegrass Festival (Bicentennial Park Stage) featuring The Mud Ducks at 1 p.m., Virgil Harden at 2 p.m. and Johnny Staats and the Delivery Boys at 4 p.m.

* 2 p.m.: High Schools That Rock + Music Makers Club (Point Park Amphitheater)

* 3:30 p.m.: Anthony Mossburg (Point Park Amphitheater)

* 5 p.m.: Elev8 Nation (Point Park Amphitheater); Rubber Ducky Drawing (Suddenlink Stage)

* 7 p.m.: Plan B (Suddenlink Stage)

* 8:30 p.m.: The Guess Who (Suddenlink Stage); River Rock Band (Point Park Amphitheater)