Members of The Thirsty Cowboy line dance team perform during the Lodi Sweet Corn Parade on Thursday night.
NATHAN HAVENNER / GAZETTE Enlarge
LODI — Music blared from front porches and crowds lined the streets as the 37th annual Lodi Sweet Corn Festival parade worked its way down Wooster Street en route to the festival grounds at Letha House Field.
Residents Rusty Warner, 84, and Dennis Chapman, 83, found a spot in the shade to wait for the parade to begin at 6:30 p.m.
Warner said he has been coming to the parade for 37 years.
“I come to it every year,” he said. “I used to be on the Lodi Fire Department, so I was in the parade.”
Chapman said he came to watch family members in the parade.
“I have got some grandchildren in the parade in the band,” he said. “I don’t come every year, but this year I did.”
Kendalle Pavlik found a spot near the town square with sons Branson, 9, and Hudson, 7, and niece Layna Kaminski, 4.
“We have been doing this since they were little,” Pavlik said.
Branson said his favorite part of the parade is the firetrucks, Hudson said he wasn’t quite sure what took the top honors for him, and Layna said she enjoys the candy tossed by parade participants.
The parade kicked off with the flashing lights of a Lodi ambulance followed by a color guard provided by the Marine Corps League Medina County Detachment 569.
Lodi Mayor Rob Geissman tossed candy from a red Jeep, and the Cloverleaf Colts marching band helped keep the beat.
Trophies will be awarded in multiple categories for parade entries including “best of theme.”
The parade concluded at Letha House Field across from Lodi Library, 635 Wooster St.
The festival’s midway officially opened Thursday at 4 p.m. and featured festival foods ranging from elephant ears and Italian sausage sandwiches to the festival’s namesake, sweet corn.
Contact reporter Nathan Havenner at (330) 721-4050 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- rides and midway open, 4 p.m.;
- corn hole registration, Lodi Area Chamber of Commerce office, 216 Wooster St., 6 p.m.;
- karaoke contest, sing a favorite song and compete for $100 cash prize, 6 p.m.;
- games including corn eating, corn husking and corn football, 6 p.m.;
- rides and midway close, 10 p.m.;
- 5K run, old Lodi Elementary School, 9 a.m.;
- corn hole registration, Lodi Area Chamber of Commerce office, 216 Wooster St., 1 p.m.;
- rides and midway open, 1 p.m.;
- singles corn hole tournament, 1 p.m., followed by corn hole team tournament, 4 p.m.;
- Crooked House Rocks, Tony Stabile and his band perform, 1 p.m.;
- Patriotic Pet Show, prizes are available for dog show entries, $5 entry fee, 3 p.m.;
- Sudden Change concert, 7 p.m.;
- NERF games, 7 p.m.;
- fireworks, 10 p.m.;
- raffle including $500, $250 and $100 prizes will be drawn at the stage following fireworks.