Hadlock Block Party branches out

Kirk Boxleitner kboxleitner@ptleader.com
Posted 8/9/17

In its second year as a full-fledged community-wide event, the Hadlock Block Party was a sprawling affair, with vendor booths and activities extending from Hadlock Building Supply to the Kivley …

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Hadlock Block Party branches out

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In its second year as a full-fledged community-wide event, the Hadlock Block Party was a sprawling affair, with vendor booths and activities extending from Hadlock Building Supply to the Kivley Center.

Hadlock Building Supply co-owner Bill Kraut started the event as a customer appreciation day for patrons of his store, but last year he and his wife, Elena, sought to re-create the formerly annual “Hadlock Days” community event, which hadn’t been observed since 2012.

After drawing an estimated crowd of 800 attendees last year, the Krauts partnered with Valley Tavern co-owners Chuck and Karen Russell for this year’s event, which kicked off with a 45-minute parade at 11 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 5.

“That parade was a big hit,” Kraut said. “It lasted a lot longer than I expected.”

Festivities continued throughout the day, with a dunk tank at 1st Security Bank and a “Show and Shine” car show at Ferino’s Pizza, the latter complemented by a beer garden.

“I guarantee you won’t find another one like it,” Port Angeles’ Ed Fisher said of his 1927 Graham beer truck, which he’s selling for $29,500. “They only ever made them from 1924 to 1927.”

While casual browsers such as Jess Broders checked out the selection of clothes at the LuLaRoe tent, throngs of young athletes – including brothers Leland and Cooper Anderson, and Makai Ward – parched their thirst with Bill’s Snow Cones, served from his customized Volkswagen.

Barbarian Fine Cuisine’s Chris Kauffman slathered sauces onto beef and pork kebabs, as Chimacum High School sophomore Isabella Harvey provided musical accompaniment with her harp at the Hadlock Building Supply site.

Across the street, Lloyd Lankei was among the brawny Canadian contingent literally pitching in for the keg toss, but it was Reese Hewett and his blind, backward-facing, over-the-head throw who had more luck in finally knocking down the pins.

Kraut has idly considered adding a fun run or perhaps more live music to the event, which already featured local bands at the Old Alcohol Plant, but he emphasized that these remain ideas for now.

“I remember when this all started in the 1990s,” Kraut said. “It wasn’t always in August, but we chose August because of everything else that was going on. We’ve actually moved our customer appreciation day to May, so that it and the block party can each be their own thing.”

MOVED TO MAY

Of the more than two dozen vendors to appear this year, Kraut saw what he deemed a healthy mix of first-time entrants and returning favorites. Indeed, as he looks to next year, he acknowledged that perhaps the biggest challenge would be to keep the event relatively contained.

“Rather than having satellite sites, we might consolidate it into one location,” Kraut said. “We could alternate it, to keep it fair.”

In the meantime, what stays with Kraut every year are the memories of the smiling faces he sees, such as Kim Hughes, Mike Benson and their little granddaughter Amira, who squealed with delight over winning a bucketful of candy.

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