Cashmere’s Annual Founders’ Days celebration marks its 35th year Saturday with a few changes in the schedule.
This year, the Crunch Pak Grand Parade returns to a morning event. The parade kicks off at 11:30 a.m., beginning on Division Street and running through downtown and Cottage Avenue. The parade ends at Parkhill Street.
The parade will have some 50 entries, including seven visiting community floats. This is the third consecutive year that Crunch Pak has sponsored the Grand Parade.
Also new this year, the popular Doane’s Valley Ping Pong Ball Drop will begin at 1:30 p.m. Free children’s activities — face painting, inflatables, a traditional bow-and-arrow demo and photos with the Cashmere Royalty — start off the fun. Those events are sponsored by Apple Annie Antique Gallery.
A helicopter will drop some 5,000 ping pong balls on the young crowd, with the first drop coming shortly after 2 p.m. There will be three drops this year for three different age groups, with a grand prize for each drop. Age groups are: 1 to 4 years old, 5 to 9 years old, and 10 to 13 years old. No adults will be allowed in the drop zone unless they are accompanying a child 1 to 4 years old.
Founders’ Day begins at 6 p.m. Friday with a free community barbecue served by the Cashmere Lions Club.
On Saturday, there will be an all-day arts and crafts fair downtown, including food vendors and face painting. Events, from a car show at the Cashmere Museum to a beer garden at El Chavo on Sunset Highway, will be held at various locations throughout the day. Morning events also include a bike tour, 5K fun run and golf tournament.
Live entertainment is scheduled Friday and Saturday evening at Club Crow and Devil’s Gulch Drinkery.
Founders’ Days is an event of the Cashmere Chamber of Commerce, funded by various businesses throughout Cashmere. A complete schedule, with locations and times, is at cashmere chamber.org. For more information, call 782-7404.
Jill FitzSimmons is manager of the Cashmere Chamber of Commerce.