Parade helps sweeten life at Waterford Fair

WATERFORD – There are two types of people at any given parade: those who throw the candy and those who collect it.

Friday night at the Waterford Community Fair Parade, 10-year-old Johnathon Claggett joined the legions of the former crowd for the first time.

“He’s done it before, but this is my first time,” said Johnathon, gesturing to his 9-year-old brother Zakari Claggett.

Throwing candy, particularly to friends, is the best part of the parade, the boys agreed as they and their fellow Waterford Youth Football members climbed through the rails of a hay wagon to take their candy throwing stations.

The candy-collecting factions were ready as well. Crowds of people lined Main Street in Beverly and Ohio 339 in Waterford Friday for the annual parade. The route led marching bands, cheerleaders, horses, tractors, fire trucks, floats and more from Fort Frye High School to the Waterford Community Fairgrounds.

Choosing a spot right near the front of the action, sisters Sarah Klinger, 18, and Lydia Klinger, 11, knew the way to the heart of their two young charges, Finnley Pennock, 5, and sister Evie Pennock, 4.

“We can have more suckers here,” exclaimed Finnley as he danced about anxiously in the grass.

“Their parents are out of town and called us to babysit,” said Sarah. “We just wanted to do something fun so we came to the parade.”

With her parents on either side of her and grandchildren in her lap, Beverly resident Alta Coffman was happy to be sharing the parade with four generations of her family.

“What else do you do in Beverly? You come to the parade and bring great-grandma and great-grandpa,” she mused.

Alyssa Lang, 4, of Lowell, was happy to count herself among the candy collectors. Each time she grabbed a treat she waved it wildly showing her mother Trish Lang before adding it to the pile.

For the Langs, the parade is a sort of homecoming, said Trish.

“We used to live in Beverly so it’s nice to come back. We come back every year and we’ll go to the fair on Sunday for the tractor pulls,” she said.

Beverly resident Talon Trout was looking forward to the same thing.

“I like to watch the tractors go by. I went to the fair last night and we’ll probably go again,” said Trout, 11, of Beverly.

Trout’s brother, 3-year-old Gwenivere, said the candy was the best, while brother Treyson Trout, 9, and pal Cameron Summerville, 11, both said the horses were their favorite part.

The Trouts’ father, Tom, said the variety of the fair is one of the reasons it makes a fun family outing.

“It’s always so much fun. This is the biggest parade in Beverly. They get to see a variety of things, and of course they love the candy,” he said.

The Waterford Community Fair continues today and Sunday with games, rides, tractor pulls, and entertainment.