WAYNESBORO - The chairs start appearing on Main Street on the evening of July 3. They come in all shapes and sizes, from straight-back to recliners, placed to insure a good spot from which to see the parade that will be marching along Main Street the next day from CV Avenue to the shopping area at Martin's grocery store.
This patriotic procession is part of the Waynesboro Jubilee, Waynesboro's way of celebrating July 4th with a full day of events beginning with a running challenge for all ages and ending with a spectacular fireworks display.
The Jubilee has been held for 19 years, attracting as many as 5,000 people. This year it is presided over by Darrell Swart of True Precision Lawn Care. "It was stated by Dr. Joe Stewart as a way to have something special that would draw the community together and mark the national anniversary," Swart said.
Swart originally got involved helping out a friend by managing the grounds and facilities, and after his friend stepped down Swart was asked to take over as Jubilee president. Planning for this event starts as early as January, and just as the weather warms up so does the intensity of the work. This year, for instance, there will be about 30 craft vendors and another 12 or more who will prepare everything from barbecue to popcorn to ice cream.
"For the convenience of the visitors, several food tents will be set up with tables," said Swart.
Organizing the parade, as they have been doing since the 1970s, will be the Brothers of the Brush, this year under the oversight of Dave Woodring. Woodring has been a member of the Brothers since he was 21 and,yes, in keeping with this affiliation, he has a goatee and a mustache. "I have been involved in the parade for some 20 years," he said, "and I can recall being in it when I was 8 years old."
The parade starts out with the Banner of the Brothers of the Brush; followed by Waynesboro's police, fire and ambulance services, a color guard, the Wayne Band, this year's Grand Marshall Ed Miller, Mayor Richard Starliper and representatives of a variety of service organizations and marching groups; and ends with the rest of the Brothers of the Brush.
The day's activities get off to a vigorous start with two races - the Annual Firecracker 5K (both male and female, ages 8 to over 70) and the Kid's 1 mile Fun Run (for both both boys and girls, ages 6-12). There is a fee and the races will be held rain or shine.
Musical entertainment will be provided by several bands,including the Mountain Ride Blue Grass Band and the North of the Mason Dixon Band. And in addition to food, crafts and music there will be other attractions such as the Wacky Wizard Magic Show, the Waynesboro Children's Troupe, a hot dog eating contest, and the F& M Trust Money Machine, for which a winning ticket provides entry into a life-size inflatable allowing an individual to grab as much blowing cash as possible.
The evening ends with a huge fireworks display. And as the colorful shells burst over the field opposite the Waynesboro Hospital, surely there will be people peering out of the windows. Swart recalls a friend who just had a baby who watched the sky light up as she looked out of her hospital room.
Putting on such a major event takes a lot of work and a lot of hands, but, Swart said,"the best part is walking around and hearing the laughter and the sight of families enjoying themselves."
When You Go:
Waynesboro Summer Jubilee
across from the Waynesboro Hospital on Main Street
Monday, July 4
Starting with the races at 7:30 a.m. and ending with fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
Free, except for race registration
For further information, call 717-762-7123 or visit the website at www.summerjubilee.org.