Clayton’s 40th Brickyard Day: Big Fun In A Small Town

Photos by Bill Sebright

The first Saturday in August 2023 dawned with hazy skies and a predicted high in the mid-80s.

In the tiny community of Clayton, Washington, residents roused from fitful slumber or perhaps restless dreams to begin preparing to attend Brickyard Day 2023 festivities.

Beginning at 8am, the Clayton Grange served breakfast, consisting of delicious pancakes with butter and syrup, sausage, and eggs, along with coffee or juice for the cost of a donation benefitting the Grange.

At 8am, just north of the Grange, participants in the Brickyard Day 5-K foot race set out on their journey to earn swift glory or just enjoy a leisurely stroll. While some people dined or raced, others began lining up on either side of Railroad Road in anticipation of the parade scheduled to begin at 10:30am. While waiting for the parade to begin, the emcees; Elizabeth Gilliam and Andy Carlson, entertained the crowd with witty banter and a scavenger hunt. Members of Boy Scout Troop 2202 offered free helium balloons, with the Lazy “L” Ranch supplying the balloons and Oxarc of Spokane once again generously donating the helium.

Around 10:30am, the parade set off, led by Deer Park Boy Scout Troop 2202, proudly carrying our nation’s colors with great reverence and care. Immediately behind the color guard rode 2023’s Honored Citizen; Mary Lentz, in a festively garlanded white Toyota convertible.

Adults and children along the parade route enjoyed candy galore scattered by walkers accompanying those participating in the parade. Some parade highlights included this year’s beautiful Deer Park float and Royalty, several cool old cars, and a steer roping demonstration put on by one of our equestrian entrants.

As the day warmed, children spent more and more time in the bouncy house/water slide. The kiddos seemed a little hyper, perhaps copious amounts of candy gathered and consumed along the parade route had something to do with that!

At 11am, live music by Time Traveler began drawing people to the grassy triangle west of the Grange. Most people just sat and listened to the music, but a few couldn’t resist kicking up their heels to lively numbers or tenderly embracing while moving to mellow melodies.

Vendors lined the street to sell their wares or promote their organization. Visitors had a chance to speak with representatives of Deer Park School District, Stevens County PUD, or buy goodies from shaved ice to decorative water bottles. Raffle tickets for one of the most beautiful quilts ever created were on sale at Deer Park’s “Fat Quarter Quilters” booth.

Free ice cream was available to those with a special coupon generously provided by The Lazy “L” Ranch. Maple or Huckleberry were popular flavors for sure! While most activities took place on Saturday, the celebration actually began at dusk on Friday with an outdoor movie at the Clayton Grange. Libraries of Stevens County kindly provided the license that allowed for viewing the show, but not to promote by name, a popular family-friendly movie. People watched for promotions and hints regarding the movie’s title before Brickyard Day, then showed up at the Clayton Grange at dusk to see if their guess was correct.

The Clayton Brickyard Day Committee has great plans for Brickyard Day 2024. Mark your calendar for the first Saturday in August 2024, and come on out to Clayton for a day filled with fun for all!

The Clayton’s Brickyard Day Organizing Committee wants to thank the following individuals and businesses for their support:

Clayton/Deer Park Historical Society, Yokes Fresh Market in Deer Park, Oxarc of Spokane, Clayton Grange #456, Lazy “L” Ranch, Real Estate Marketplace in Deer Park, Libraries of Stevens County, Jessica Varang, Sue Kelsch, Deer Park Royalty, Boy Scout Troop #2202, Derrick Littrel, Dairy Women’s Association of Washington, Deer Park Printing, Deer Park High School Business & Marketing/DECA – Tiffany Bogle, and, all advertisers and everyone who supports Brickyard Day!

Your Support Makes Our Community’s Celebration Possible!

Sources:

  • JL Brian – Brickyard Day Chair, personal communication, April 2023
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