The 2016 Apple Blossom Festival has concluded and organizers are indicating that this year’s event may have set records.
Although attendance dipped due to poor weather on Friday, Westford Kiwanis officials believe festival goers from Thursday to Sunday reached well into the thousands according to their unofficial estimates.
Apple Blossom Festival Chairman Rick McNeil says there were 53 entrants in this year’s Apple Blossom Parade, the most in his memory, with approximately 2,000 people either participating it or watching it along the parade route from Graniteville Road to the Abbot School.
While the Kiwanis spearheaded the efforts, McNeil says the festival couldn’t have happened without support from various organizations and individuals throughout the town.
“The biggest challenge we have is reaching out for resources, we have a lot of things to cover. Basically we’ve been getting more actively recruiting other groups and volunteers,” he said.
Following the parade, five candidates gathered in the Abbot School gymnasium for the 2016 Apple Blossom Queen crowning ceremony.
Each candidate came from Westford Academy and was nominated by a teacher for a dedication to public service.
This year’s award went to Emilee Mauro, who is looking to follow in her mother’s footsteps and join the military after graduation.
“I’m excited that we all got nominated, which was awesome,” said Mauro. “I thought one of the other girls were going to win because they’re awesome and all have done a lot of great things. I was surprised.”
During the Apple Blossom Queen crowning ceremony, honors were also given to 2016 Westford Kiwanis Person of the Year Nancy Cook, as well as the winner of the Roudy Bowl for best float in the parade, which went to the Cornerstone Church on Graniteville Road.