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“Knit In Public” group—A friendly large group of local knitters took residence in front of the Art Store, Boutique and Palmer Bar, to celebrate “Knit In Public” day. It was a sunny Saturday. There were lively discussions of yarn and patterns and fibers and all the while the knitting needles were clicking away. The group seemed quite content and cheerful. They chatted with shoppers. It was a perfect Palmer moment to watch them knit and talk beside the the perennial Palmer Bikers and loyal patrons who happily hang out at the classic Palmer Bar. The knitters’ signboard read, “Why do you knit?” Their answers were good ones: “Form of Expression; De-stress; It is Fun; Passion to Create; Sense of Accomplishment; It Gets you Through the Hard Times;” and finally, “So I don’t Kill People.”

Colony Days Highlights

The rain started within the hour after Colony Days Festival closed down on Sunday evening. But the entire weekend was fabulous and sunny. There was an abundance of good cheer and an epic variety of activities in Palmer this past weekend. Now, before Colony Days becomes a perfect memory, let’s consider just a few of the most marvelous aspects:

A Capital Parade—There was every color and style of tractor participating followed by old trucks, antique cars and a full procession of Jeeps in the parade. Mayor Edna was waving with goats. Fire Trucks were shined up. The Scottish Bagpipers blew it out of the water, with their pipes and kilts. The snappy “Percussion In The Valley” drumline was tight and lively. Miss Alaska lounged on a truck roof and waved. Sweet revived Spoth Volkswagens purred along the parade route touting 203 Kombuchu. Mat-Su NOW offered up a beautiful rainbow coalition marching right beside the Statue of Liberty. There were dogs, vets, cowboys, horses and Smokey the Bear. There were gymnasts and church singers. There were a variety of politicos. There were young football stars, elders and babies. And there were…

Snakes in Palmer—So there you were enjoying all the little goats and the parade dogs and next up is a full freaking assembly of marching snakes. There were at least 10 participants, each fully wearing snakes of many colors, dimensions and width. Some snakes were wrapped around their necks and arms and legs. Some snakes leered from behind their heads and peaked around their torso. If you are a snake lover, it was tremendous surprise. If you are not a snake lover, it was an unexpected horror show. Either way the visual was unforgettable. The parade entry was from Jonathan’s Reptiles in Wasilla. He is a well respected snake guy, full of passion and enthusiasm. His Snake entry received the Second place overall for best parade float, and First in the business category. He actually travels around and teaches about snakes. Oh, and you can rent him and his snakes for your next office party or birthday party. He has very good reviews.

Old Cars and Street Dance—South Main, which is the block of shops and bars south of the 4-way stop saw some major action this weekend with full street closures. And it was total fun for the festival goers and shop keepers alike. On Friday night sweet old cars took over the block. On Sunday afternoon the terrific band, Denali Cooks, took the stage in the street. It was perfect weather and perfect music. Some dancing rock stars were there along with a couple doing the Tango. Young ones were dancing crazy and flossing like their life depended on it. The very best part was watching the children dance with their parents. It was total joy and a memory to keep.

Planting of the Palmer Planters—Laura Sampson and Jan Newman organized and planted the concrete planters. Grow Palmer’s Edible Food Trail. Extra help came from Denise Staats and nice men with shovels, Mark Begich and Peter LaFrance. Jody Anderson’s Laughing Raven Catering showed up to feed the whole gardening crew. Now it is up to the community to assist gently with the weeding and maintaining of these precious little gardens of food. If you haven’t seen this treasure, take a walk behind the Depot along the railroad trail.

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