Community

A celebration in true Manette style

The Manette Bridge rises above last year’s Manette Fest. Festivities include food, vendors, face painting, a parade and more. - Photo courtesy of John Thayer
The Manette Bridge rises above last year’s Manette Fest. Festivities include food, vendors, face painting, a parade and more.
— image credit: Photo courtesy of John Thayer

There’s a first time for everything.

“I actually haven’t been to a Manette Fest myself,” Wendy Daniels said.

As president of the Manette Business Association, Daniels is leading the planning charge and getting an up-close look at her first Manette Fest, scheduled for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12 on and around East 11th Street.

“This is a fun thing. It’s going to be a lot of fun to do,” Daniels said. “We’ve been working on it since May.”

Manette Fest kicks off at 9 a.m. with a Fun Run sponsored by the Kitsap Family YMCA.

“All the Fun Run participants get a free Manette Fest T-shirt,” Daniels said.

A $5 pancake breakfast will be held at the Manette Saloon also at 9 a.m.

More than 40 vendors will line the streets of Manette selling all kinds of merchandise.

Bremerton Community Theater actors and Little Elvis are a few of the entertainment acts scheduled to perform throughout the daylong event.

“The live music is, I think, the biggest draw,” Daniels said.

A variety of food will be for sale at Manette Fest. There will be Filipino food, kettle corn, cheesesteaks and free root beer floats.

“We’re going to have lots of food,” Daniels said. “Good food, a variety of different foods.”

Manette’s Tiniest Parade kicks off at 1 p.m. at the old post office on the north end of Scott Avenue. Children of all ages are invited to dress up in costumes and participate in the festivities.

Face painting, a bounce house, raffle and fairy tale photo booth are some activities children can do and there will be a beer garden for the adults.

Local artist Steve Abbott created a watercolor painting for this year’s Manette Fest and two prints of it will be auctioned off at next week’s event.

More than 1,000 people turned out last year and the Manette Business Association is hoping for an even larger crowd this year.

“A lot of people just don’t come through here and have forgotten about us,” Daniels said.

She said the small businesses in Manette join together for Manette Fest ever year in hopes of getting people familiar with the small town.

“As small businesses, it’s just so hard to advertise for yourself and basically pay the rent,” she said. “It’s just hard because there’s no big store here.”

Daniels said organizing this year’s festival has been tough because the Manette Business Association has gone through several presidents in recent years.

Daniels, owner of Storybook Tea & Boutique, became president in June and is excited to bring her ideas to the organization.

“I went to the meetings saying, ‘I’m not going to be president, I’m not going to be president’ and I walked out as president,” she said. “They kind of looked at me to bring the energy back in.”

While the organization wants people to have a good time at Manette Fest, Daniels said they hope the community will come back to check out the town’s quaint shops.

“We kind of just want to let people know we’re still here and have something of value to offer,” she said.

For more information about Manette Fest, visit www.manettebusinesses.wordpress.com.

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