Parade, rummage sales highlight Frankton Heritage Days

·2 min read

Sep. 17—FRANKTON — As he watched a steady stream of floats, fire trucks and other parade participants drift slowly past his house Saturday on South 11th Street, Harold Garrett noted that the annual Heritage Days Festival feels different this year.

Garrett, who has lived in the town for more than 30 years, is still grieving the loss of his wife, who died this month. The couple rarely missed the weekend festival, which in addition to the parade features a three-day fair with carnival rides and games, food trucks and circus performances.

Garrett said he's always looked forward to the crowds that descend upon Frankton for the weekend, and this year the activities provided a sort of diversion for him.

"Frankton is a nice little town, and a lot of these floats and trucks and people that come through are not just Frankton people, they're from all around," Garrett said. "It makes it nice."

A booming cannon shot signaled the beginning of the parade, which included the Frankton Lapel Marching Band, Frankton High School cheerleaders, members of the football team and businesses from throughout the area.

The procession made its way past a spot where Tina Collins had set up a folding chair so she could watch her grandchildren gather candy tossed from the vehicles.

"This just brings the community together," said the 22-year Frankton resident, who attended the festival with her son, daughter and their families. "Your kids are all sitting there chatting, your neighbors are chatting, friends are catching up."

Collins said they planned to take the kids to the fair in the afternoon, in part to let them run off some energy. "We have all day to go to the festival and let them wear it off," she said with a laugh.

Parking along the town's residential streets was scarce as people roamed among dozens of yard sales — another staple of Heritage Days, which, organizers said, allows neighbors to become better acquainted with one another. Throughout the weekend, bargain hunters browsed through clothing, housewares and small electronics while chatting with fellow shoppers and homeowners.

"This festival does help bring people in beyond the (high school) sports and everything that happens with the school," said Aaron Hymes, president of the Frankton Heritage Days Board. "(The yard sales are) an opportunity to really capitalize on that."

Saturday's activities also included a morning 5K run, a car show, helicopter rides and an art show.

"We're trying to bring the community together and trying to celebrate this town," Hymes said. "A lot of work goes into it. Basically we start working on it in October so we can be ready for the next September. I think it's just the opportunity to come together — the old tagline being, 'Where folks get together for old times' sake.'"

Follow Andy Knight on Twitter @Andrew_J_Knight, or call 765-640-4809.