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Walbridge has summerlong birthday celebration

3-day festival set for July; vintage baseball in Aug.

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Tom Welsh cuts grass in Loop Park in Walbridge. The park will be the scene of many of the village's centennial celebration events including the biggest event July 4-6 and a vintage baseball game Aug. 10.

THE BLADE/DAVE ZAPOTOSKY
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Walbridge’s big birthday party continues.

On April 7, it celebrated the 100th anniversary of its incorporation. There was a commemorative village council meeting, proclamations were read, and memorabilia were viewed.

On Saturday, there was a sock hop at the former high school and elementary school building, with root beer floats and music from the 1950s and ’60s.

This Saturday, the observance continues on a more serious note at the village’s oldest house of worship, Grace Bible Baptist Church, 116 E. Union St.

Couples are invited to renew their wedding vows in a centennial year wedding renewal ceremony. The free event is at 11:45 a.m., with Pastor David Stogsdill.

Couples may sign up at the committee Web site, walbridgecent.com, by emailing committee@walbridgecent.com, leaving a message at 419-913-3719, or contacting the pastor at pastor@gracebbc.net.

The biggest event, however, will be the celebration at Loop Park on July 4, 5, and 6. This will have to be paid for, noted Darlene Limmer, president of the Walbridge Centennial Committee, so an all-day fund-raiser has been scheduled for Thursday at the Bob Evans restaurant in Northwood, 435 Lemoyne Rd.

Diners presenting a Walbridge centennial flyer will have 15 percent of their check donated to the three-day festivity at the park. The flyer can be obtained at the Walbridge Branch Library or printed from the centennial committee Web site.

Ms. Limmer said on July 4 a Miss Village of Walbridge will be crowned. The contest is open to girls ages 16 to 20.

“We’ll have continuous entertainment those three days,” Ms. Limmer said. “There will be rides, vendors, and food.” The hours each day will be noon to 11 p.m.

Mayor Ed Kolanko is putting together a centennial vintage baseball game at the park Aug. 10.

It’s a fitting event for Walbridge, he said, because “Walbridge is a very big baseball town. There were a lot of good athletes, and when I was 10 years old we played in the Little League World Series in Rockford, Ill. We’ll use vintage-style equipment. It will be kind of neat to see the former baseball players in Walbridge get back together one more time for a good event.”

— Carl Ryan

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