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Fire trucks – at least a dozen of the region’s finest and shiniest – marching troops and high stepping bands… it’s all part of the grand old-fashioned hometown parade that will come strutting down Main Street in Frewsburg again this year. And, once again, thousands of spectators from all across Western New York will join in the celebration of the Frewsburg Fire Company’s Old Home Week and Fair.
Festivities kick off on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, at 6 p.m., June 14, 15 and 16, and on Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Frewsburg Firemen’s Fair Grounds in the center of town. Old Home Week once again promises to be the perfect summer vacation get-away for kids, grownups and families alike. Amusement park rides, games, especially Al Bauxhall’s longtime favorite “I Got It” game, lots of festival foods, live music and a parade will bring it all to life again this year.
“And nobody goes away hungry,” said JoAnn Patterson, fair organizer, a nearly 30 year firefighting veteran and life member of the Frewsburg Fire Department. The food tent is famous for their signature Firemen’s Food, especially the secret recipe, beer batter haddock fish fry. “It’s unforgettable,” Joanne said, “the recipe has been handed down from generation to generation of Frewsburg firefighters. We serve it up until it all runs out, which eventually happens every year.”
And as Joanne tells the Jamestown Gazette every year with a wink and a smile in the final hectic days of planning the big event, “If you get here after we’ve served the very last fish fry we might just have to give you a hook and line and ask you to catch your own. So don’t be late!” And just to make sure the no one goes away thirsty, the beer tent will be open, too.
“We’re bringing in Southern Tier Wrestling this year,” event organizer Tom Moore said. “They have become really popular around here so we invited them to come meet some more fans.” Bell time is 1:00 on Saturday on the Firemmen’s Grounds. “They’re bringing Battle Lines and featuring a Tag Team Championship: The Divine Alliance (c) vs. The HomeWreckers.” And for fans who already know Southern Tier, and for those who soon will, be aware that Snitsky will be in action!
Smokin’ 45 will take to the stage at the fair grounds on Friday night from 8 until midnight for fans who know, and new fans who will enjoy, this popular local, Jamestown band. They bill themselves as a country band gone a little bit Rock n’ Roll and they always please their music loving crowds.
On Saturday night Frewsburg welcomes the Black Widow band to the firemen’s musical stage, from 8 until midnight. Black Widow has played themselves into the music industry’s record books by winning over 50 music awards and being inducted into the Buffalo Music Awards Hall of Achievements. They play rock ‘n roll and “Just about all kinds of music for every event.” They are sure to be a crowd pleaser, according to fair organizer Moore.
Here Comes the Parade
The big Old Home Week parade steps off sharply at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
“One of the exciting things about organizing a firemen’s parade,” said Joanne Patterson, “is that every fire company that is coming – and they are coming from all across western New York this year – has to be ready to speed away with lights and sirens if a barn goes up in flames during the parade.”
They do love to display their finest equipment for the public who pays for them, according to Joanne, and the people they serve at great risk to their own life and limb. Firemen are hometown heroes. Parades and events like Frewsburg’s Hometown Days are important fundraising events, but also a great time for the community to show their appreciation and support.
Scouting troops, marching bands and dozens more will also be joining the parade. Anyone else who wants to march, Joanne says, can just call the Frewsburg fire house as late as 2:30 on Saturday afternoon and sign up. “Everybody loves a parade, and just about anybody can march with us, too.”
Dusk on Saturday will be the signal to light up the Grand Finale Fireworks and fill the sky over Frewsburg with lights and blazing colors and the sound of rockets and bombs. It is the ever popular way to celebrate Old Home Week in Frewsburg, New York.