DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine — It took 10-year-old Grant Lundy just below a minute and 30 seconds to scarf down two whoopie pies within the youth consuming contest on the Whoopie Pie Pageant on Saturday.
It was a powerful feat for the first-time competitor from Bangor who took massive gulps of water in between bites of whoopie pie and stopped to wipe his face with a serviette earlier than capturing his arm into the air to declare victory.
“It feels superb,” stated Lundy, whose grandparents stay in Dover-Foxcroft. “Like, superb. At first I didn’t know if I’d win as a result of I noticed a bunch of different empty plates.”
The thirteenth iteration of the Whoopie Pie Pageant returned to downtown Dover-Foxcroft this weekend after a two-year hiatus through the COVID-19 pandemic. A digital model of the occasion was held in 2020 and 2021. What started as a small fundraiser within the Heart Theatre parking zone in 2009 has flourished into the most important annual occasion in Piscataquis County that attracts hundreds of Mainers and guests from out of state yearly.
“I used to be very involved concerning the warmth by way of folks’s attendance and whoopie pies don’t at all times do effectively within the warmth,” stated Patrick Myers, govt director of the theater, which organizes the occasion with the Piscataquis Chamber of Commerce. “However folks actually loved it.”
Attendance numbers weren’t instantly obtainable, however Myers has by no means seen so many individuals gathered within the small city, and “each indication was that this was record-setting,” he stated.
A stretch of East Foremost Avenue was blocked off to make room for about 20 bakers promoting whoopie pies and distributors providing quite a lot of carnival meals favorites. Crafters and makers — some from as distant as Texas — bought handmade wood creations, soaps, wreaths and extra.
The Piscataquis County-based Doughty Hill Band carried out songs. Dover True Worth hosted Dan Burns, an Augusta-based chainsaw carving artist, for its second dwelling expo present and raffled off certainly one of his items. A youngsters zone supplied bounce homes, a bungee trampoline and rides on a mechanical bull. Conjuring Carroll, a magician from Embden whose actual identify is Carroll Chapman, made balloon animals for youngsters and placed on a magic present.
“It’s good to be again doing what I really like doing,” stated Chapman, who donned a scorching pink shirt with bananas and has attended the pageant since its inception.
Eternally Whoopies proprietor Michelle Emery of Fairfield bought whoopie pie Christmas ornaments, earrings, keychains and magnets at her sales space. She started whipping up whoopie pies for her youngsters’ college bake gross sales, which later advanced into her craft enterprise and attending occasions just like the Whoopie Pie Pageant.
Farther down the road, Abigail Corridor of Garland Christian Fellowship painted a inexperienced dragon on the face of slightly boy named Even Washington. The pageant was the primary time Even and his siblings tasted a whoopie pie, his father Jonathan Washington stated. The household is from the Philadelphia space.
Vail’s Customized Truffles and Icelandic Bakery, primarily based in Dover-Foxcroft, supplied whoopie pies in a number of flavors, from chocolate peanut butter to lemon blueberry and cream cheese to vegan vanilla Oreo. By about 1 p.m., the bakery was down to only two flavors.
“We will’t sustain,” Charlie Vail stated, smiling and ringing out prospects. He and his spouse, Jen Vail, co-own the household enterprise.
By the mid-afternoon, many bakers had been operating low on whoopie pies. Crowd favorites at Dexter-based Sweetie Pies included orange creamsicle, lemon and Bismarck flavors, proprietor Heather Villone stated. Mum’s Gluten Free Kitchen from Parkman supplied 19 gluten-free choices, together with coconut, espresso and mint whoopie pies.
Youngsters and adults additionally competed in whoopie pie consuming contests. Tyler Wing of Sangerville and Bryan Lowder of North Carolina claimed these victories, respectively. Lowder, who’s working seasonally at Acadia Nationwide Park, determined to take a look at the pageant after listening to about it on the radio — and it didn’t disappoint, he stated.
Annie Raynes, 17, of Dover-Foxcroft and has attended the pageant since she was about 5 years outdated. This yr’s model is best than ever, she stated whereas standing in line for a lemonade, consuming a pink velvet-flavored whoopie pie.
“Dover is a reasonably small city, however this attracts plenty of totally different folks,” she stated. “That’s most likely my favourite half.”