4 May 2019 - Offham May Day Celebrations

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The village of Offham comes together each year on the May Day Bank Holiday weekend to hold a day of celebrations and activities. Once again, we were given the privilege of taking part by leading the procession and performing some show dances.

This year, the event fell on 4th May (Star Wars Day) but the weather seemed to think that it was still April as the forecast was for showers and sunny intervals — and this proved to be correct. There was also quite a wind blowing but at least this kept the clouds moving.

As usual, all the participants in the procession congregated at the Village Hall. Alan Austen again kindly helped us out by playing in the band and Pip took over bass drum duties for the procession. Thankfully, the rain stopped just in time as the parade made its way through the streets of the village with Kettle Bridge leading the way, closely followed by a tractor and trailer carrying the May Queen and her attendants, with children from Offham Primary School bringing up the rear.

Once we reached the village green, we allowed the tractor to pass so that it could turn round. While it was doing this, we entertained the crowds with a performance of Presidcot.

Then it was time for the May Queen, Sophie Bailey, to be crowned. In her interview, it came out that she was actually a national champion in the world of OSET bikes. If, like me, you have never heard of OSET bikes, they are smaller motorcycles designed specifically for youngsters so that they can compete in events such as trials and motocross. They are electric powered and so are much safer than petrol bikes. Sophie has been riding an OSET since the age of just 6 and in 2017 she won the National British Girls C Route 3 Championship. Definitely a name to look out for in future.

Meanwhile, we took refuge from the showers by repairing to the tea tent for some refreshment. The tent was adorned with artwork created by various classes from Offham Primary School and the best had been awarded rosettes. Alan A entertained everyone by playing a wide range of tunes. This was a welcome respite from the sound of the rain hitting the tent.

The rain finally relented and the Offham Dash races were held. This was followed by the very popular Dog Show where the whole village seemed to have brought their dogs along. There were numerous categories of winners culminating in a Best of Show.

Then it was our turn again to treat the crowds to a display of dancing. We performed KBC Processional and Annie's — or "Anakin's" as it was renamed just for Star Wars Day. As usual, our finale was an all-in Churchtown which gave the audience the opportunity to join in and many of the younger children did just that.

Our thanks go to the organisers of the Offham event which is always a great occasion and we thoroughly enjoy it.

But before I finish, I trawled the web looking for suitable jokes to mark Star Wars Day. Unfortunately, I found some.

Why did Anakin Skywalker cross the road?
To get to the Dark Side.

Which website did Chewbacca create to share Empire secrets?
Wookieleaks.

Why is Yoda such a good gardener?
He has green fingers.

What did they call the Star Wars movie with an invisible droid?
C-through-PO.

Why did the movies come out in the order 4, 5, 6, 1, 2, 3?
In charge of scheduling, Yoda was.

Luke: What’s for dinner tonight, Dad?
Anakin: Wookie steak.
Luke: Is it any good?
Anakin: It’s a little chewy.

Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi walk into a Chinese restaurant. Ten minutes into the meal, Luke still can’t figure out the chopsticks, dropping food everywhere. Obi-Wan finally snaps: “Use the forks, Luke.”

How did Darth Vader know what Luke was getting for his birthday? He felt his presents.

I think it is time I had a Leia down!

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