Littleton's Western Welcome Week returning, with changes

Yearly event has its roots in 1928 celebration

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In July 1928, Littleton Independent editor Houstoun Waring wanted to celebrate two events: the centennial of the birth of town namesake Richard Little and the 40th anniversary of the Littleton Independent.

A date in August 1929 was chosen for what was originally called “Homecoming.” The story on the city’s website mentions that train fares dropped in August, so more folks would be able to attend an event then ...

There was a baseball game and Mayor Charles Louthan (whose family home is now Café Terracotta in downtown Littleton) was named Grand Marshal, a title awarded each year since to a community individual who has contributed time and energy to the City of Littleton. When there is a parade, that individual rides in a car at its front.

Renamed Western Welcome Week in 1962, the celebration has grown to include a large arts and crafts show, now called the “61st Craft & Home Improvement Fair” and set for Aug. 15 in downtown Littleton — one of the hoped-for events as circumstances in this pandemic year continue to unfold.

Cindy Hathaway, the Western Welcome Week executive director whose office is at the historic Bemis House, 5890 S. Bemis St., said there were still some booths available when we spoke with her two weeks ago, but many artisans have signed on, so readers should still plan on advance holiday shopping, as well as seeking treasures for the home and garden ... and for self — lots of lovely jewelry and textile items should find their way to Main Street and nearby blocks.

And then, there are the food vendors who will have to operate under restraints spelled out for them ...

Sadly, the annual parade is not possible in this year of social distancing — since packed crowds have in past years stretched from Gallup Street to the west end of Main Street each year.

Hopefully, folks will manage to allow space and still enjoy visiting exhibits by local and visiting artists, craftsmen and businesses.

The opening Family Night barbecue, concert and fireworks event at Sterne Park is canceled on Aug. 7, but families may want to try gold panning near Carson Nature Center on Saturday morning, Aug. 8. (The Littleton Elks Children’s Fishing Derby, originally scheduled Saturday afternoon, Aug. 8, is canceled.) Aug. 8 also features the Breck Bazaar at Breckenridge Brewery.

The Littleton Elks Lodge has postponed its Aug. 9 Car Show to September, date tba.

That first Sunday in WWW, Aug. 9, brings the 41st Annual Family Pancake Breakfast, previously held at Arapahoe Community College, but moved to Geneva Lake and Park, near the Littleton Center in 2020. (Planned from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m.)

Tuesday, Aug. 11 brings the Hawk Quest Family Night Out, but the RiverPointe Swing Dance, also scheduled Aug. 11, is cancelled.

On Aug. 13, Historic Littleton Inc. will offer Main Street Historic Tours in the late afternoon and a concert by the Cody Sisters is scheduled

Hudson Gardens, 6115 S. Santa Fe Drive, will host the 9th Annual Pancake Stampede 5K Fun Run and Walk from 8 to 10 a.m. on Aug. 9, but the Kids Games of Old and the Bruce Wolf Stick Horse Stampede are canceled, as are performances of the one-act play “Summer Comes to the Diamond O” at Littleton United Methodist Church on Aug. 9 and 16.

Friday, Aug. 14, brings the Elks Hometown Pig Roast and Dance. The Annual Quilt Show at Littleton First Presbyterian Church is canceled.

One can still get the morning of Aug. 15 off to a good start at the 34th Grand Sandwich Breakfast at Littleton United Methodist Church, en route to the Craft Fair. And the LPCAAA Dunk-A-Cop is listed for Aug. 15 at Bradford Auto Body at the west end of Main Street.

The schedule for Sunday, Aug. 16, shows the Brad and Mary Bradford Memorial Duck Race as planned, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Memorial Rose Garden/Little’s Creek.

We will watch for changes and additions to this schedule.

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