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UMFK partners with the Greater Fort Kent Area Chamber of Commerce to plan a weekend full of activity September 17-20

September 14, 2009


The University of Maine at Fort Kent and the Greater Fort Kent Area Chamber of Commerce will combine their respective Homecoming and Scarecrow Festival celebrations into a large, community-wide event the weekend of September 17, 18, 19 and 20 in Fort Kent.         

The four days of festivities feature many events, including a downtown Fort Kent Street Festival and the ever-popular annual parade.         

The Scarecrow Festival will kick-off with the first-ever “Mr. Potato Head” Pageant. All spuds...all dudes!  Everyone is the family will enjoy this “spoof” of a pageant… male contestants from the Valley will compete for the title. The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. at the UMFK’s Fox Auditorium.   Admission for adult is $7 and children 12 and under is $5. Tickets will be available through the Chamber office, Paradis Shop N’ Save or at the door. Parental guidance is suggested. For more information, contact the Chamber office at 834-5354.          

UMFK’s Blake Library Gallery will feature photos by Aroostook County photographer, Sherri Skinner. She also will hold a contest with a prize of an 8x10 photo of your choice within an 11x14 mat.  Sherri will display an abstract photo, of something in nature, in which you will have to guess what it is. The winner will be drawn from all correct submissions.  Take the time to become one with nature.  Come to the UMFK Blake Library gallery and enjoy the scenery.  You may be the winner of one of Sherri's photographs.  The exhibit may be viewed during regular library hours through Thursday, September 24. For more information, contact gallery curator Sophia Birden at 834-7527.                        

On Friday, September 18 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. a Bengal barbecue and a pep rally will be held on the UMFK campus quad near Nowland Hall to celebrate the reunion of returning alumni, current students, faculty, athletes, staff and friends. The barbecue is open to the public at a cost of $8 per plate.   

Beginning at noon, sidewalk vendors will set up along West Main Street selling food, specialty items, homemade goods and other items. Businesses interested in being part of the bazaar should contact the Chamber of Commerce office at 834-5354 for more information.                                

At 6 p.m., UMFK will host a “Bouncy House,” for children under ten years of age,  near the Chamber of Commerce office to add to the street festivities. Other fun-filled family events, organized by local organizations, also will be on display.          

Food vendors will be on site and fun-filled events are planned for all ages.               

A UMFK Alumni & Friends Social will begin at 6 p.m. at the Swamp Buck Restaurant (upstairs). “Come and reminisce about your days at UMFK.”                       

Bee Jay’s Tavern will feature “Nadeau Family Band” beginning at 9 p.m.  Come by and dance the night away.            

On Saturday, September 19 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., sidewalk vendors will again be set up, giving everyone who missed out on Friday, or just couldn’t get enough of the bazaar, another chance to see what Fort Kent area businesses and residents have to offer.           

Sign-up for the World’s Largest Mini Golf 9-Hole Tournament, which will be held on Saturday beginning at 9 a.m.  Come by and try out your putting skills at the participating businesses.  Contact the Chamber office for further information at 834-5354, or drop by the office to register.  The entry fee is $5 per card. Individuals can purchase more than one.  First, second and third place prizes will be awarded. The event is fun for all ages.         

Beginning at 10 a.m. the UMFK Athletic Department will sponsor a 5K Race that will begin at the UMFK Sports Center. Registration begins at 9 a.m. or to pre-register, contact the athletic department at 834-7828 or you may register on-line at            

The annual Homecoming and Scarecrow Festival parade will begin at 11 a.m. The parade will start at the courthouse on Market Street. It will turn and run along Main Street where it will cut into the Irving parking lot, follow Elm Street until it intersects with Main Street, continue up Monument Square, and end at the University.  Businesses or organizations interested in participating in the parade should contact Susan Tardie at 834-7557. Line-up is at 10:30 p.m. 

All entrants in the parade are encouraged to follow the theme of “Scarecrow.”  Awards for winning entries will take place at the end of the parade route at the Acadia House, the residence of UMFK’s president.  

The First Red Cross Disaster Relief Walk-A-Thon will begin when the Homecoming/Fort Kent Scarecrow Festival Parade finishes. The start/finish point of the event will be located at the Red Cross emergency vehicle parked in the UMFK Annex building (Old Model School) parking area off of Pleasant Street. The event route will follow the Fort Kent Mills which is just over three-miles-long. The Red Cross welcomes business teams, groups of walkers, as well as individuals to participant and raise funds for local disaster recovery. Cash donations will also be accepted at the registration table. All forms and donations collected will be turned in at the registration table. Registrations will be accepted from approximately 1-3 p.m. The event will end as the last person registered crosses the finish line at approximately 4 p.m. Participant pledge sheets may be picked up at Quigley's Building Supply, FairPoint, Al's Tastee Freeze, Rogers Sport Center, The Swampbuck Restaurant, Northern Maine Medical Center reception desk, and UMFK's Madawaska House.  

On Friday, September 18 from 1 to 3 p.m. the Red Cross Emergency Response vehicle will on display located near Fox Auditorium at UMFK. Red Cross Disaster Relief representatives will be on hand to answer questions and hand out Red Cross Informational materials. If you have any questions please e-mail John Metz at            

From 2 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Come and listen to the “Music in the Park – Celebrating Seniors,” which will be held at Riverside Park. The following entertainers will be on-site: Les Chanteurs Acadiens, The Valley Folk and Rapture.  In addition to the great music, various venders will be set-up from the County. Free admission, but donations will be greatly appreciated. Do not forget to bring a folding chair. Organized by UMFK student nurses.            

An elegant Saturday evening will be highlighted by the Alumni & Friends Banquet in Nowland Hall, which brings together alumni and current students, as well as friends of UMFK for a social and a banquet. The annual alumni awards will be presented to an outstanding, future, and young alumni.  Also during the evening, the UMFK “Athletic Hall of Fame” will announce its inductees for next spring.  

The social begins at 6 p.m. at the Bengal’s Lair with the Alumni & Friends banquet following in Nowland Hall. Tickets are $20 per person and may be purchased through the Alumni Affairs office. Contact the Alumni Affairs office at 834-7557.                       

At 9 p.m. Bee Jay’s Tavern will have entertainment by DJ Tommy Guns.            

On Sunday, September 21, beginning 10:30 a.m. and running until 12 noon, an Alumni and Friends brunch will take place at Nowland Hall. The cost of admission for the event is $9 per person. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.  For more information on the brunch, contact 834-7557.            

The UMFK women’s soccer team will be in action at the Alumni Memorial Field where it will do battle with the University of Maine at Machias at 11 a.m. Following that  game, the UMFK men’s soccer team will play University of Maine at Machias at 1 p.m. Go Bengals!             

Elsewhere on Sunday, the Fort Kent Senior Club will hold a Scarecrow Festival Dinner from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fort Kent Senior Center. For more information on events held at the center, contact Christy Plourde at 834-4446.              

For more information on UMFK “Homecoming” events, please contact the Alumni Affairs office at 834-7557.  For information on “Scarecrow Festival” events, please contact the Greater Fort Kent Area Chamber of Commerce at 834-5354.                                                                                                  ######