Ending summer with a little Main madness

Walter Sprague

NLJ file photo

Dozens of children gathered on Main Street last year to enjoy the water fight during Madness on Main event. The event organizers Martha Bickford and Natasha Townsend hope to continue the Labor Day weekend event in the future.


Walter Sprague

Art & Culture Reporter


With all the events Summer has offered, it seems appropriate to end things with a little madness. And that is just what Martha Bickford and Tasha Townsend have in mind. On Saturday, Aug. 31, Main Street will be closed off to vehicle traffic for the second annual Madness on Main. The street closure will start at 7 a.m. and run from South Sumner Avenue (Isabella’s and First State Bank Parking lots) to Railway Avenue. The different businesses involved in the madness can set up at this time. The events will be from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Events are set up by the individual businesses. Each one will be held either outside those businesses with a few happening inside the stores. They range from a sidewalk chalk contest, organized by Skull Creek Studio, to the second annual pie-eating contest, put on by Mike Freeman of Farmers Insurance. One unique activity will be the Weston County Sports & Western Wear’s “Beat Cancer” car bash. This BASH is right in line with the madness idea, with participants having the thrill of destroying cars that are prepared specially for this event.

Of course, no event like this would be complete without food and drink. And there shouldn’t be one empty tummy by the end of the madness. The food frenzy begins at 9 a.m. with a pancake feed sponsored by the Newcastle Volunteer Fire Department in the First State Bank parking lot. An ice cream social will take place at 11 a.m. at the Weston County Library, under the front awning next to the newest mural being painted by Del Iron Cloud. At 5 p.m. a street dance with DJ Andy McKay will kick off, and hot dogs and hamburgers are on the menu. During the dance, the city has approved open containers from 5 to 10 p.m.

The Weston County Children’s Center will have a hands-on learning experience with Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Music, or STEAM, a nationwide push to get children as early as preschool interested and prepared for the job market in these areas.  

Any of these events will be a mess. Just think about the pie-eating contest. There will be 10 pies for each age group, and this year’s pies are chocolate cream. You can register on a first-come, first-served basis with Mike Freeman at the Farmers Insurance office. This kind of mess might be a turn off for some, but not to worry. The fire department will have a fire truck on hand during the water balloon fight. Last year there were 700 water balloons tossed during the event, but the balloon number has been increased to 1,500 this year. So the chocolate pie residue should not last very long.

Come and enjoy the madness as Main Street celebrates summer one last time. For a full list of the events, see the ad in this week’s News Letter Journal, on this page.


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