LEBANON — Among the 118 entries that worked their way up Main Street on Saturday during the annual Lebanon Strawberry Festival, one float stood out for its connection to the history of the celebration. 

It carried past members of the royal court and these alumni spanned nearly 80 years of the festival's history, ranging from the 1940s to members of the 2018 court.

Betty Adams, a princess in the 1950 court, rode on the float with her older sister, Ruth Lenox, who was crowned Strawberry Festival Queen in 1941. A third sister, Bertha Schackmann, was named queen in 1930.

Adams said the Lebanon Strawberry Festival has played a major role in her family's history. In addition to the three sisters, she had two nieces who also served as Strawberry Festival princesses: Becky Holscher (1960) and Karla Lenox (1977).

"My mother (Creszentia Schackmann) missed one Strawberry Festival from 1912 until 1985," Adams said, adding that even the one absence had a festival connection. "She missed when Ruth was born on Strawberry Fair day, June 7, 1923."

This is the third time an alumni float has been entered in the parade. The first was in 2009 for the 100th edition of the festival. It returned in 2014 and will continue to be part of the festivities every five years. Adams appreciated the opportunity to get involved again.

"We just had lots of fun today and saw so many people and waved, and so many little kids that were so excited about the fair. It's a fun time, it's a fun community," she said.

This 110th edition of the festival, which is themed "Strawberry Adventure," drew people from outside of Lebanon who don't have ties to the community.

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Rachel and Alan Dale of Junction City brought their grandchildren, Gavin, 11, and Jocelyn, 13, both of Medford. This is the third time the Dales have attended and the first for the grandkids.

"We wanted to come because we love the parade. We had to make a special appointment to have them this weekend so we could come," Rachel Dale said.

The day began with the annual 1 mile walk/run followed by the 5K run. Gunner Harris won the boys 12-under one mile event in 6 minutes, 48.79 seconds. Ruby Vandenbos won the girls 12-under race in 6:59.83.

Lebanon High School junior Alex Solberg won the men's 5K in 16:59.05. Bridget Dahlberg, a first-year student at the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest, won the women's 5K in 18:19.07.

Saturday's festivities included performances by Shades of Huey, a Huey Lewis Tribute Band, and concluded with a fireworks show.


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