Parade enthusiasts may want to arrive early Saturday when the 36th Buckley Log Show kicks off the festivities with its annual parade down Main Street at 10 a.m.
Serving as the 2009 Grand Marshall is Kim Westerberg, who has served with the Elkridge Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association since 2000 and the Buckley Chamber of Commerce for six years.
Westerberg will ride in a collectible car with Buckley Mayor Pat Johnson, both of whom will be tossing candy along the way to spectators.
As long as Mother Nature doesn’t rain on this year’s parade, Westerberg expects record-breaking crowds.
“This is one of the biggest and best we’ve ever had,” she said. “It gets bigger every year; last year the weather was almost perfect.”
Not only are the spectators expected to line up early for the best seats on Main Street – she suggested arriving by 9:30 a.m. – the parade will also bring in approximately 60 entries. Those include every genre, from Boy Scouts and gymnasts who tumble and twirl to heavy log-hauling equipment and square dancers, too.
“There’s something for everyone,” she said.
Throughout the weekend, several vendors will line up along River Avenue to offer plenty of food and merchandise, Westerberg added. Log Show memorabilia will also be available for sale.
The hour-long parade starts at “C” and Main Streets and heads west toward River Avenue where it concludes. Westerberg said five awards will be presented: Best Logging Truck, Best Kids’ Entry, Best Float, Best Low Boy and Best Miscellaneous Truck.
Those wishing to participate in the parade or as a vendor can register through 5 p.m. Friday. For information, call the Buckley Chamber of Commerce at 360-829-0975.
The Log Show kicks off at noon with its traditional two-day line-up of events, said Roland Miller, Log Show president. The free event takes place at the nearby Buckley Log Show Grounds between River Avenue and state Route 410. Uncovered bleachers provide plenty of seating for spectators.
Although the show follows a standard routine, the events aren’t assigned specific times because the number of participants determine how long each event lasts, he said.
Still, the crowds are expected to go wild throughout the two days of fun, with just some of the events including the ever-popular speed climb – a race to the top of a 75-foot spar pole. Chris Nicholas took first place in the event last year with a time of 36.05 seconds. Tyson Hanson was second with a time of 36.20 and Jake Nicholas took third in 38.33.
Another crowd-pleaser is the single bucking competition where contestants use a cross-cut saw to slice through a 10-inch alder log; Jon Flintoff claimed first in the 2008 category with a time of 36.88.
In the ax throw, participants must throw an ax from 20 feet away to hit a 4-inch target. Hitting the bulls-eye last year was Mike Nicholas with 26 points, followed by Jay Doty, 24 points and Wes Bruhn with 23 points.
With at least 20 logging events on the docket, the competition continues on Sunday with the wrapper toss, crew relay, obstacle choker setting and log rolling – the latter a perpetual crowd pleaser.
Awards will be presented at the conclusion of the show on Sunday, with 2008 Bull of the Woods winner Robert “Bob” O’Neal passing the award of legacy to the 2009 honorees, brothers Gary and Rod Friese of Buckley.
Also recognized during the awards ceremony will be the 2009 Logger of the Year. That title was claimed last year by longtime participant Jeff Carlson, who earned 42 points. It was déjà vu for Carlson, who shared the title with fellow participant Tyson Hanson in 2007 and also won it in 2003 and 2006.
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