STANHOPE - The temperatures have been soaring this week but the Stanhope Lions Club has a way for Hamilton County residents to cool off on Saturday - just bring your lawn chair and a fork and enjoy some ice-cold watermelon.
Saturday marks the 56th annual Stanhope Watermelon Day, sponsored by the Lions Club. The event begins with the parade through town at 10:30 a.m. Organizers said this year's parade entry categories are business, church, club, horse, antique or children. For parade information, contact Ron McKenzie at 826-3290 or Wayne Romp at 826-3477. The parade theme is "Great friends, great neighbors."
Following the parade, rides, Bingo and food stands open in the city park. The Safety Kids Train will offer rides starting at 11 a.m. and the bounce house, sponsored by the Stanhope Fire/EMS, is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The cake walk, sponsored by the Fire Department, gets under way at noon and the Sugar Creek Cloggers will perform, also at noon. Belly Dancers will perform at 12:30 p.m. and again at 1:30 p.m. The kids pedal pull begins at 1 p.m. Other events throughout the afternoon include the kids nickel dig at 2 p.m. and a performance by Sheltered Reality Drummers at 2:30 p.m. Ken Frette will provide music at 3:45 p.m. and Jesse and the Medicine Men take the stage at 5 p.m. Tickle the Clown will be featured in the park throughout the afternoon.
The star of the day - the truck-load of watermelon - will be served from 1 to 5 p.m. and at 7 p.m. Remember to bring your own fork or just dive in with your hands.
A drawing for $750 in cash prizes will be held at 8 p.m.
On Friday night, the Stanhope Alumni Banquet will be held in the community center with the social hour to begin at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m.
In case of inclement weather on Saturday, Watermelon Day events will be held Sunday, according to organizers.