By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
Jamboree Days this year in Crestline, July 2 and 3, attracted thousands and revived many of the traditions of years past. They had the three-inch Jamboree Days 2022 button, celebrating the Legendary Lake Gregory theme, which seems to have almost sold out. The theme was embraced by the parade and the lake was enjoyed to overflowing with visitors all weekend long.
On Friday night at the Bear Claw they announced the winner of the Grand Poobah fireworks fundraiser contest as Ty Holifield. In second place was Terragon the goat with Andrew Braggins rounding out the court. They rode on the Rim Recreation and Park District float in the parade to great cheers. Almost $3,000 was raised to donate to the fireworks fund and Rec and Park district.
The parade had 66 units in it, the longest parade in recent memory. The line-up before the parade went all the way down to the County Road yard on Cottonwood Drive. The parade started at 10 a.m. in Top Town and, despite the large number of entries, the parade’s end had reached Lake Gregory by 11:30 a.m.
Trophies were awarded in six categories. The Charles S. Mann trophy for best commercial entry went to Thousand Pines Camp for their scripted Star Wars movie scene with actors and directors (they recently were used as a movie filming location). The Arthur Gregory trophy for best nonprofit went to the Crestline Soaring Society and the Judges trophy went to Goodwin & Son’s Market.
Other categories included Best Performance Group, the Compton Cowboys, and the Americana Trophy, which was won by the Mountain Fifes & Drum Corps. The Theme trophy went to the Lake Gregory Company for their lake patrol boat chasing a scallywag breaking all the rules at Lake Gregory.
Passing out the awards this year was Grand Marshal Arthur Gregory, who got out of the Crestline Bus in front of Akasha and handed each winning float their trophy as they passed by. Citizen of the Year was Steve Garcia, who drove himself and his family in his Jeep in the parade.
There were vendors along Lake Drive and the Compton Cowboys, who had been in the parade, hitched their horses up to the hitching post in front of The Stockade Restaurant and told the community about their programs to keep kids out of gangs and taught local residents a lot about being around horses. Some kids even got to sit on the horses and others fed them.
Randy Savvy, who is a singing cowboy/performer on Death Row records label and has recorded with Dr. Dre, performed his hip-hop county music and was later seen drinking beer from the loving cup the Compton Cowboys won in the parade. The kids were dancing around and having a great time while the bands played that afternoon at The Stockade, in the Arrowhead Credit Union parking lot and at the Alpine Mall.
That evening at 6:30 the beach gates were opened and free admission was given anyone to sit on the beach to watch the fireworks. There were several food trucks and the Lakeside Grill was open for those who wanted to eat. Many residents who have decks that look out over the lake had deck parties.
The Lake Gregory Company hosted a VIP party with a delicious dinner with beach or patio seating catered by The Top Town Chef with music from the Little Bear Valley Band. The fireworks lit up for sky at 9 p.m. and reflected on the lake for over 15 minutes. And yet the parking lots and the street congestion had mostly cleared by 10 p.m.
The Crestline Community Picnic on July 3 was declared to be a complete success from Jamboree Days organizer Dirk Rinker and Grayson Lopez. The second day of Jamboree Days was the first day the public was allowed on the new grassy meadow next to the San Moritz Lodge; the new grass was soft, deep and green, and was pleasing to the feet and fun to roll around upon according to the children playing on it. The field also had kite flyers using it, and families had blankets laid out over it, eating picnic lunches, as was suggested. Everyone said they were enjoying getting to use the park.
The relay races, including a three-legged race, balloon toss and potato sack races, attracted many participants and the grass was so soft that even falling down onto it was fun. The watermelon eating contest was a complete success.
The music was recorded and announcements were made from the portable stage brought over from the Credit Union by Mick Hill. There were free hotdogs, ice pops and many family-fun booths.
There were parrots and other birds and a turtle from Castle Graystone, there was music from the Piano Lady, a dog comfort station, old cars to explore, and so much more to enjoy during this picnic in the park event.
By 4 p.m. the picnic was over, ending Jamboree Days weekend, leaving only a happy memory that had been enjoyed by thousands.