Woollybear Festival returns with parade, food and more

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VERMILION, Ohio (WJW) – It’s the return of the FOX 8 Woollybear Festival, which is commemorating its founder, beloved meteorologist Dick Goddard.

Today marks the 49th year for the festival and its woollybear caterpillar races, costumes and grand parade, following a year in hibernation in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

FOX 8’s Own Suzanne Stratford was there bright and early to catch the morning crowd.

This year’s festival, which is the single largest one-day event in the state drawing around 100,000 people, will be bittersweet, as it’s the first festival since Goddard passed away in August 2020.

All of your friends and familiar faces from Fox 8 will also be there, but this year, due to COVID, they will only participate in the parade.

Here are some shots taken from SkyFOX this morning:

This year all contestants will receive a free T-shirt with artwork designed by Mr. Goddard. Another tee will be available for purchase with all proceeds benefiting Friendship APL in Elyria, Ohio.

The FOX 8 I-Team’s Ed Gallek says the turnout was huge!

The free and open to the public event runs from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., with the parade starting at 1:30 p.m. Find out more about the day’s schedule right here.

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