BANGOR – It took two hands and all his body strength, but Makie Doore, 6, successfully squashed several apples in the cider press Sunday afternoon at the Bass Park Family Day.
Hundreds of children and parents flocked to Bass Park for the sunshine and various family activities, which served as a fundraising event for the Bangor Museum and Center for History.
“As a historical museum we try to find fundraisers to support our mission,” Terri Garner, executive director of the museum, said. “This is a family-oriented event and one of its missions is to get the Bangor museum better exposure in the community.”
Kids enjoyed activities like painting pumpkins, getting henna tattoos, going for hay rides and taking photos with the racehorses and sulkies.
Festivities began at 11 a.m. and continued until about 4 p.m. Families could purchase tickets for a 50-50 raffle and an opportunity to ride in the horse-races pace car. Each activity required a certain number of tickets, which all cost $1.
As the 12 regularly scheduled horse races continued to run on the track, the museum board of directors and volunteers worked to maintain the attention span of the area children.
“This is certainly more people than we usually have [on a Sunday of horse racing],” Fred Nichols, director of racing at Bangor Raceway & Off Track Betting, said Sunday. “There’s a lovely sprinkling of young children. It’s nice to see families out together.”
Alisa Evans, 2, of Brewer particularly enjoyed her henna flower tattoo. Once eucalyptus oil was smoothed over the artwork, Evans’ said her hand even smelled like a blossoming flower.
“I’ve been doing a lot [of henna tattoos] today, it’s been a big hit,” Claris Martin, 12, of Old Town said. Martin volunteered for the day and became the chosen artist.
“The event was very successful and there were certainly more people than anticipated,” Garner said.
As for next year, the volunteers have learned their lesson and will be prepared for a higher volume of participants.
“Next year I promise to have two hay rides as well,” Garner said, noting that the rides were the highlight of the day for many children.