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Westminster’s Cracker Company & Festival

Sophie Dellasanta, Editor

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Every town has a unique trademark or something special that adds to its identity. Whether it’s a small restaurant, factory, or just a gathering that reminds people about the town.

Sophie Dellasanta
Today’s package of Westminster Crackers

Even a small town like Westminster has its iconic Westminster Crackers that have made their way nationwide.

More importantly, the town found a way to connect its history and bring together the community with their annual Westminster Cracker Festival.

Like other community gatherings, The Cracker Festival brings in groups and helpers from a variety of different areas: community service,  advertising, and simply volunteering.

Years back, the town was famous for its cracker company and the goal was to continue the legacy  and bring the town closer with an entertaining gathering.  This year’s annual event is less than three weeks away and there  will be plenty of crackers.

Most individuals use these breaded crackers in their clam chowder , and it is quite true that these were originally made right here in tiny Westminster, Massachusetts.

Yes, Westminster Crackers goes way back to the original company and factory right in downtown Westminster.

Beginning in 1828, Alfred Wyman established a cracker bakery – in his large white house – on Main Street, Westminster. Between years of baking crackers, it wasn’t until 1842 that the tiny house bakery was updated into today’s bright red cracker building next door. As the company evolved over many years, different workers took over the business.

Mr. Eric Dawley, great relative of past owners of the company, explains his knowledge on the crackers factory and business.  “Both my great grandfather and grandfather ran the business until 1968 when Westminster Crackers production stopped.”

According to historical highlights, Westminster Crackers resumed their production in 1982, but in Vermont, where it still runs today.  As many know, the Westminster factory is now just an historical site.

Even for two decades of no local business, Westminster continues their iconic company name through 2018.

So, with the history comes the annual fall Cracker Festival here in Westminster.  Since 2015 – three years ago -the festival embarked on creating its yearly get together in downtown Westminster.

This years festival-the morning of October 20th-kicks off with a 5k road race; In addition to an afternoon of live music and scrumptious food – quite pleasing to the crowd.

Rain or shine, each year welcomes a great turnout with plenty to explore and enjoy. Not to mention all proceeds benefit the Westminster Village Foundation, giving back to the community.

Many citizens from the town appreciate the annual festival, and have agreed in full support to continue.

 

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Westminster’s Cracker Company & Festival