The 65th annual Fort Verde Days is ready to go on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 9 and 10, according to a news release.
This two-day event kicks off on Saturday with a parade at 10 a.m. featuring long time community members Dick and Brenda Hauser as the Grand Marshals.
“Desert Life” is the theme of this year’s parade led as always by the Camp Verde Cavalry escorting the Colonel’s Daughter and her court. The parade starts behind Basha’s Supermarket on Finnie Flat Road and continues up the hill onto Main Street passing through the center of Town and then onto General Crook Trail to finish. Main Street will be closed during the parade.
With plenty of vendors, nonprofits and food trucks along with live bands there is lots to do on the event field in downtown as well as inside the community gym.
This free admission event runs Saturday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.
Saturday bands include Aaron McCall from noon to 2 p.m., Peaceful Outlaws from 3 to 5 p.m. followed by Swamp Poets 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Sunday has the Seth Brown Band onstage from 1 to 3 p.m.
New this year will be the Adventure Zone both days. With two inflatable obstacle courses, challenge games including jousting and a bungee ball race and more all with a $7 bracelet. There will also be a pony carousel ride for $3.
Fort Verde Days has functioned as an unofficial Homecoming event for the community which grew around historic Fort Verde. Preserved now as a State Historic Park, Fort Verde will be free to the public and filled with reenactors, historic displays and other events this weekend.
The Questors will be selling pickles and offering tours of the historic Hance House at the far end of the Fort Parade Grounds. The annual benefit Pancake Breakfast for the Kiwanis Club of Camp Verde returns on Saturday morning at 7 a.m. in the Redinger Ramada on Hollamon Street.
The Camp Verde High School Booster Club will be raising funds for several sports with hamburgers and hot dogs for sale plus a football toss fundraiser. At 2 p.m. awards for the parade entries, Little Britches/Little Petticoats and the Colonel’s Daughter will be on the stage on the event field.
Normally Fort Verde Days features a carnival but this year that is not happening.
“Our previous carnival had some legal problems around tax payments as well as a charge of human trafficking in Utah and we could not in good conscience contract with them,” Camp Verde Parks and Recreation Department Manager Michael Marshall said.
Since schedules for carnivals are set well in advance a replacement company was unavailable, Marshall added.
As partial compensation, parks and recreation rented a large number of inflatable activities and contracted with a vendor to provide a pony carousel ride.
“It was a big disappointment to us and we are trying to do what we can to have more opportunities for fun” Marshall said.
Volunteers are needed to help with the event so if you are interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact Camp Verde Parks and Recreation, 395 S. Main St., via email at email@example.com, or call 928-554-0820, option three. You can also go online to visitcampverde.com/events.
Information provided by the Town of Camp Verde.