The last weekend of July has come and gone and with it the annual Casco Days.

Fair rides, fireworks, games, raffles, music, food and a road race were all part of the three-day event sponsored by the Casco Fire Association, which kicked off this past Thursday.

The inaugural Casco Days was held in 1935. That year, the celebration generated $374.04 for the town. Fast-forward to 2013, and close to $120,000 was raised. Melissa Kluge, staff member for the fire association, said earnings are reinvested in the community for things like scholarships for local high school students and improvements to the Casco Days Park itself.

“They support a lot of the different community committees, so it all goes back,” Kluge said. “In the olden days they purchased new fire equipment with it, but now you know fire equipment is so expensive that’s not possible, but they do it in other means giving back to the town.”

The Rogers family, Boston residents who own property in Naples, said Saturday was their first time attending Casco Days.

“The carnival was really fun actually, and it was a great parade as well,” said Kevin Rogers.

Kluge said they are always trying to improve the weekend and utilize the grounds in the best way possible, but she said everything seemed to go very smoothly this year.

“Saturday is a really busy day because there are so many events that are happening, but really everything went off without a hitch. Right from the road race in the morning and the parade, and then Rick Charette, Kluge said referring to the Windham-based children’s entertainer and his Bubble Gum Band.

Pictures from all three days are located on the Casco Days website along with the schedule of events for 2014.

Online registration for the 36th annual Casco Days Road Race opens in February.

The Ferris wheel, a carnival staple, was one of several activities at the midway during the 79th edition of Casco Days.Emma Decamp, of Washington, D.C., was the first woman across the line in a time of 27:31. Decamp edged out second place finisher Jaclyn Pavlos of Poland, Maine, by 3 seconds.Sirens from police and fire equipment proved too loud for some attendees who shielded their ears during the Grand Parade.What parade would be complete without a clown or two? This young onlooker received a fist bump from this friendly joker.Woody from “Toy Story” came to life Saturday to take part in the annual Casco Days Parade. There appeared to be no snake in his boot.The Kora Shrine Renegades raced down the parade route in interwoven circles, demonstrating their driving skills to spectators.Jimmy Butcher, of Oxford, was the overall winner of the 35th annual Casco Days Road Race. Butcher clocked a time of 21:11, beating 560 participants who finished Saturday morning’s four-miler.An array of Disney characters braved the hot temperatures Saturday to greet admiring fans.


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