June 25, 2024

Local summer festivals are the latest victim of COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned our world upside down this year, leading to the cancellation, or scaling back, of our favorite small town summer festivals. This photo was taken at Flekkefest.

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The summer of 2020 will be a little boring around our communities. With the COVID-19 pandemic expected to peak midsummer in Minnesota mid-summer, and small gatherings allowed only, festival organizers are taking no chances. The list of canceled summer festivals and events grows by the day, and those that will occur will be vastly stripped back.

The Grant County Old Settlers Reunion, in Barrett, will have fireworks only for one night the last weekend of June, and the Hoffman Harvest Festival may do the same thing, the third weekend of August, they will decide at their city council meeting June 8.

The July 11 Wendell Softball Tournament, and 20th anniversary dance is called off, and hopefully will be held next year featuring the Johnny Holm Band. However, the Wendell Lions will be hosting their “Ride for Sight” with some modifications and restrictions to abide by CDC recommendations. Watch for details on that event.

Ashby Appreciation Days is mostly off, but the annual Ashby 5K/10K will be converted to a virtual race, with proceeds benefiting the Ashby Legacy Fund.  Visit www.ashby5k.com for further updates regarding the Appreciation Days weekend (July 17-19, 2020). 

Elbow Lake’s Flekkefest looks will be scaled back to a one day celebration on August, 8, with fireworks and some other events to be announced at a later date.

There has been no decision on the Stevens County Fair at this time. The Commercial Club of Brandon will decide on Brandon Summerfest on July 1. That festival is held the first weekend of August.

Here is a partial list of other local festivals and events that have been canceled for 2020: Kensington Rune Stone Days in June; Fergus Falls Summerfest, June 12-13; Perham Turtle Fest Parade Concerts and Turtle Races, June 17-21; Pelican Rapids Pelican Fest, June 25-27; Erhard 4th of July Parade and Fireworks; Evansville 4th of July Parade and Celebration, there may still be fireworks; Phelps Mill Festival July 11-12; West Otter Tail County Fair, July 15-18; Grant County Fair, July 16-19; The Glenwood Waterama; Battle Lake Wenonga Days, July 25-26; Vining Watermelon Days, August; the Douglas County Fair, August.

If you have any questions about your favorite festival, call ahead, or check a local newspaper. Events may change at any time.

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