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Neponset is gearing up for annual Picnic Day celebration on June 7-8

NEPONSET — Neponset is gearing up for its annual Picnic Day celebration to be held Friday, June 7, and Saturday, June 8, in downtown Neponset.

The second annual Taste of Neponset cookoff will take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in
Scott Park on Friday. Only 10 contestants will be allowed, and all types of food are welcome. Entrants can set up from before 6 p.m. and will serve their dish to foodies for $1 per serving from 6 to 7:30 p.m. The contestant with the most sales by 7:30 p.m. will win. Entry is free.

At 7:30 p.m., a variety show will begin in the pavilion at Scott Park. Currently there are three acts: the Kewanee High School Marching Boilermakers, One Little Zip Tie Improv Duo from Chicago and stand-up comedian, Max Babcock. Audience members should bring their own chairs. Anyone interested in performing should contact Barb Safiran at 309-883-1164.

A full day of activities is planned on Saturday, beginning with a pancake breakfast, sponsored by the Neponset Fire Department, from 7 to 11 a.m. at the Community Building. A kids fun run will begin at 7:45 a.m. at Scott Park, followed by the seventh annual 5K run at 8 a.m. The entry fee is $15 for the fun run and $20 for the 5K. The price includes a shirt and pancake breakfast ticket.

Vendors will be selling a variety of goods, including homemade jams, crafts, garage sale items, Pink Zebra and much more in Scott Park from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Vendors must register and pay a $10 fee. However, the first 10 vendors to sign up will have the fee waived. For information, contact Karen at the Neponset Village Hall at 309-594-2201.

Also in the park, there will be a bounce house from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Games and competitions for kids of all ages will begin at 1 p.m. and include bubble games, tug of wars and seed spitting.

At 10 a.m., the parade will begin on Commercial Street. Bicyclists of all ages are invited to decorate their bikes and lead off the parade. Also welcome are antique cars, antique tractors and implements, kids and their pets, walking entries, floats and horses. All entries, except the tractors and implements, will line up at the old high school on Harlan Street at 9 a.m. Farm machinery will line up at the former Blue­chip Factory on North Harlan Street, also at 9 a.m.

The Neponset Public Library will kick off their summer reading program and have kids’ activities starting at 11 a.m. Activities include book stacking contests and kindness rock painting.

A pie baking contest, sponsored by the Neponset Historical Society, will take place in the Community Building. Any amateur may enter by bringing their pie to the Community Building between noon and 2 p.m. Pies must be fruit, nut or other non-dairy filling that does not need refrigeration and should be made in a disposable pie plate. The winner will be announced at a pie auction at 6 p.m. in Scott Park.

At 5 p.m., the Neponset Fire Department will cook and serve pork chops at the annual potluck dinner in Scott Park. Attendees should bring a dish to share, as well as their own utensils, plates and chairs.

Pies will be auctioned at 6 p.m., followed by the band Blood Orange at 8 p.m. in the park pavilion. A beer tent will be available during the evening. Attendees should bring their own chairs.

Registration forms and the detailed agenda are available on the Village of Neponset Facebook page, the Neponset Picnic Day Facebook page and at the Neponset Village Hall.

For more information, call Barb at 309-883-1164 or Karen at the village hall at 309-594-2201.

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