The city of Waverly is welcoming people from throughout west central Illinois this weekend for their annual community picnic.
The Waverly Old Fashioned Picnic officially kicked off last night with carnival wristband night.
Even more action can be found tonight, as nineteen contestants will compete in the yearly pageant starting at 7 p.m.
Picnic Committee members Sue Palliser and Jeff Grimmett explain everything that’s going on with the picnic this weekend. Palliser tells us about the theme of this year’s picnic, and how the committee chooses each year’s theme.
“Our theme is Hollywood – Lights, Camera, Action. What we do is we put out a theme contest to the grade schools before the prior school year ends, and each class submits their suggestion, and then the committee decides which theme we like. Then the winning class gets either a pizza party or an ice cream party,” says Palliser.
Saturday is one of the biggest days for the Waverly Picnic, as the day kicks off with a parade. Palliser and Grimmett explain that there’s a wide variety of parade entries each year.
“We actually have a pretty good sized parade for basically a smaller town. We have a lot of political interests that join us from the counties around us. We usually have several floats, we actually have more floats this year than we usually have. All the churches participate in one way or another, any group or organization in town, they all usually enter something into the parade. It’s a complete variety of a lot of nice things to see.”
Grimmett says that one of the best things about the annual picnic is that, aside from the carnival rides, nearly all the other activities are free.
“Tickets are $2 apiece for the rides. Everything else in the park, you don’t pay for. Any entertainment, anything that’s going on on the stage, the pageant, and whatever is going on throughout the day, that’s free to the public.There’s no park entrance fee. It’s in our community park here in Waverly, you just find your own parking spot, enter the park and enjoy the evening,” says Grimmett.
Following the three-day picnic, the Waverly Lion’s Club is hosting a breakfast from 6 to 10 a.m. at Poppy’s Coffee Corner on Sunday.