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Past and present merge

One thing that's remained a fixture for all 43 years of the celebration is the parade.

"The parade has always had a lot of people on Main Street and down by the museum," said Grattidge. "The longest running theme has been the parade, it's been a constant theme since the very beginning."

A tradition that fizzled out was a community dance.

"For awhile, they were doing a street dance the night before, a square dance, that sort of dropped by the wayside," said Grattidge. "We're looking to add whatever we can to the weekend to make it a special weekend."

The celebratory weekend mirrors what the Town of Charlton stands for, said Grattidge.

"When people think of Charlton, they think of the history, the farming community, nice landscapes those are the hallmarks of Charlton," said Grattidge. "It's a beautiful town to live in and drive through; the historic district that we have right on Main Street with all the historic homes and a lot of people think of Charlton Tavern as a place to gather and meet."

Grattidge said the town maintains its distinctive atmosphere through the Farmland Protection Plan and strong zoning laws.

The Charlton Historical Society's museum is open all weekend and houses the Community Art Exhibit featuring local artists. On Sunday, there will be hotdogs, hamburgers and a bake sale at the Charlton Freehold Presbyterian Church and the Charlton Garden club will hold the annual plant sale.

The Charlton Heritage 5K Run and Walk steps off at 10 a.m. on Maple Avenue on Saturday, June 4. On Sunday, June 5, the Founders Day Parade begins at 2 p.m.

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