Pre-Roche De Boeuf Show, Race Kick Off Festival Celebration

The Anthony Wayne Marching Generals head through downtown during the 2022 Roche de Boeuf parade. MIRROR PHOTO BY KAREN GERHARDINGER

BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — Waterville will “Get Back” to the days of having a party the night before the Roche de Boeuf Festival.

The Toppermost Beatles Tribute Band will take the stage on Friday, September 22 from 8:00 to 11:00 p.m. at 1 S. River Rd., along Waterville’s riverfront. The free concert is presented by the city of Waterville and Fallen Timbers Family Recreation Center.

“Several people have heard them perform and loved it,” said Lynn Eicher, Waterville Chamber of Commerce board of directors member. “They have authentic costumes and instruments and put on a good show.”

Food and beverages will be available for cash only. Bring a chair or a blanket to enjoy the show, which will include five costume changes as Toppermost works through the Beatles’ career from the early to the later years.

“It’s been 10 years or more since we had those Friday night parties. People are pretty excited about it,” said Eicher.

The Friday festivities also include a Run De Boeuf 5K and 1K. Sponsored by the city, Scout Troop 101 and Second Sole Toledo Racing Services, the 1K begins at 6:00 p.m. followed by a 5K at 6:30 p.m. The course begins and ends at Memorial Park, 1 S. River Rd. To register, visit runsignup.com or register on the day of the race on-site.

While the Friday lineup promises an evening of fun, the 50th Roche De Boeuf Festival in downtown Waterville on Saturday, September 23 promises to knock your socks off. Beginning at 9:00 a.m., 135 vendor booths will line the streets. At 10:00 a.m., the parade steps off from up the hill at Farnsworth Road and Michigan Avenue, with 60 entries proceeding to River Road then heading south toward Waterworks Park.

Throughout the day, guests can enjoy live music on the main stage at Memorial Park, including Bliss, Freight Street and the 25s. On South River Road, the Waterville Historical Society will have its Robbins House, Sargent House and Cobbler Shop open for tours, and the campus will be filled with re-enactors and activities. 

Behind Peddlers Alley on South Third Street, a Kids’ Zone will include photo ops with Elsa and Spiderman, a photo booth, face painting, Pattrick the Magician and Miss Rita’s Balloon Animals, inflatables, games and a scavenger hunt. Volunteers are still needed to help with this area, said chamber director Jackie Lehman.

On North Second Street, the Rue des Artistes – sponsored by the Anthony Wayne Area Arts Commission – will feature the work of 30 local artisans and musicians Asa Danekind and Curt Wolfe.

At the corner of South and Second, the Shawn’s Irish Tavern parking lot will be filled with classic cars. Participants can roll in prior to the show to register and join.

Roche de Boeuf souvenir T-shirts will be sold at the information booth for $25.00 in gray, maroon and blue and are available online at the chamber’s website.

Throughout the festival, guests can park at Waterville Plaza at the corner of Michigan Avenue and Waterville-Monclova Road or at Conrad Park and catch a free shuttle ride downtown.

For more information, visit www.watervillechamber.com.

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