Wyoming festival promises peach of a day

The Wyoming Peach Festival band, directed by Dave Delone, entertains the crowd with a variety of songs at last year’s festival. They will be back again Saturday morning for this year’s event. (Delaware State News file photos)

WYOMING — The Peach Festival will take over the small town of Wyoming Saturday, celebrating all things peachy.

Now in its 29th year, the festival continues to celebrate the town’s long history of peach growing, which can be dated back to at least the late 19th century.

“Wyoming is such a little town. Not everyone even realizes it’s here. But we’re able to bring out people year after year to celebrate our history,” said Jaci Stokes, a committee member since the first festival and town resident of 56 years.

“Over the years, the festival has grown immensely and I think the committee does a great job at planning a day full of events that everyone enjoys,” she said.

The festivities begin at 9 a.m. with a parade from Camden-Wyoming Avenue to West Third Street before everyone migrates downtown near the train tracks where more than 130 crafters, community organizations, food vendors and more will be set up, along with a bounce house area for the kids.

Live entertainment will play from the freight platform throughout the day.

The Wyoming Peach Festival Band kicks things off at 9:30 a.m. followed by musician Jake Stant at 10 a.m.

Members of the Wyoming Peach Festival Band march along Camden-Wyoming Avenue in Wyoming last year.

Kristen VanHekle, from Macaroni Kid, will entertain children at 11 a.m. with the bands Fried Okra and Stone Jack Ballers to follow right through 3 p.m.

One of the highlights of the annual festival is also the crowning of the winner for best peach dessert.

“In the past, we’ve had everything from your standard peach pie to layered cakes to cookies,” said Erin Nieli, a member of the planning committee for the past three years. “It’s always fun to see how creative people can be.”

Entries for the dessert contest are accepted at Town Hall until noon when they will be judged by a group of very lucky volunteers.

The winner will be announced at 2 p.m.

Master bakers aren’t the only ones coming out on top after the festival, because it serves as an annual fundraising event for the town of Wyoming.

Courtney Baltz watches the Peach Festival parade with her children last year.

In the past, the funds raised have gone toward everything from flag poles to landscaping and this year, the proceeds will in part go to installing new grills in Wyoming Park.

Traditionally, one grand prize has been raffled off to raise money for town improvements, but this year, more than 25 businesses have donated items to be raffled off, which people can enter the day of the festival.

Free parking and transportation to the festival is available at W.B. Simpson Elementary and Wyoming Methodist Church. Shuttles will run approximately every 15 minutes.

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