The Rod and Gun Club of Westbrook will be particpating in Westbrook Together Days for the first time this year, with a parade float and a log cabin in Riverbank Park.
“Everyone is excited about it,” said club President Bob Ferron.
The club will setup a log cabin booth in Riverbank Park besides having a float in the parade. Ferron sees becoming part of Westbrook Together Days as vital to increasing awareness of a club program, sending local youths on a one-week, free vacation to the Maine Conservation School at Bryant Pond.
The club has been paying a $475 tuition in recent years, sponsoring one youngster at the school. Ferron said the club would like to send three or four each year. The school has programs for kids ages 8 to 18, and they can sign up at the club’s booth in the park for a chance to attend the conservation camp. A lottery will determine who would go.
The weeklong conservation school features swimming and canoeing along with courses teaching outdoor skills and health and safety along with environmental education. Parents of campers are allowed to attend the school for a day. A representative from the school, a non-profit organization, will be at the log cabin booth in the park.
Raising the money to send kids to the camp, the Westbrook club is sponsoring a drawing with $1,000 in prizes. A kayak from Lincoln Canoe in Freeport, valued at $765, is the top prize. Other prizes include fly rods valued at $100 each, a one-night stay between Sept. 6 and Dec. 31 at the Normandy Motel in Old Orchard Beach, and an auto detailing at the Bill Dodge Collision Center in Westbrook.
Tickets for the raffle will be $1 or six for $5 and will be sold at the booth. The drawing will be held on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 19.
The log cabin booth will also sell water at the booth along with homemade cookies and candy. “Every penny we make is going toward sending kids to the conservation school,” Ferron said.
Ferron, a Westbrook native who now lives in Scarborough, built the log cabin in his yard. Log slabs for the cabin were donated by a sawmill in Scarborough. The front of the cabin features the club’s logo and antlers from a moose that shed them. The log cabin also will be decorated with a variety of fishing gear.
The booth will also sell tickets for the annual duck race, sponsored by Westbrook Together Days.
Along the parade route, the local rod and gun club members will toss candy to kids from its float, a restored antique sleigh. Parade watchers will also view their kayak drawing prize, which will be carried aboard a vehicle.
Ferron hopes that participation in Westbrook Together Days will reel in more members for the club, which began in 1948. The club meets twice monthly at the University of Southern Maine in Portland but is looking to return to a Westbrook location.
Those wishing more information about the club’s Westbrook Together Days activities or joining the club should call Ferron at 883-6573.
In addition to Ferron, other club officers include Paul Thibeault, vice president; Shawn Randall, treasurer; Alan Thibeault, secretary; and six directors, Charlie Sirois, Joe LaBrecque, Don Mannett, Mike Ferron, Jamie Bourgeois and Skip Mercier.