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Windom's Riverfest kicks off Friday; new events planned

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Windom's Riverfest kicks off Friday; new events planned
Worthington Minnesota 300 11th Street / P.O. Box 639 56187

WINDOM -- From butterflies to baseball, from turtles to tennis and from parades to pancakes, Windom's 25th annual Riverfest schedule includes tried-and-true traditions and new events for all ages throughout the weekend.


A highlight of the celebration will be the Grande Parade, beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday.

"We're over a hundred units," said Cheryl Hanson, Riverfest administrative liaison. "It features bands, royalty, shrine precision units, antique cars, antique tractors, machinery, and features local organizations and businesses."

The parade route will be the same as last year's, beginning at the back area of the Cottonwood County Fairgrounds, traveling east on 16th Street, turning south onto Sixth Avenue and turning east on 10th Street. Finally, the parade turns onto Third Avenue and ends at the Lutheran Church of Our Savior.

"A parade is a time when a community can come together; families, friends of all ages can gather together to enjoy the festivities -- wee little ones to the older generations ... everybody loves a parade," Hanson said.

A 20-minute fireworks display will begin at 10:15 p.m. Friday.

The theme of Riverfest 2008 is "Pride in the Past, Faith in the Future," a particularly appropriate theme for the 25th festival. Windom began its community celebrations in 1947 with Flax Days, which was later changed to River Days.

Nearly 100 volunteers helped organize more than 40 events for Riverfest this year.

The newest event is the butterfly release, set to kick off the festival at 5 p.m. Friday at the Sogge Memorial Center. The butterfly release will celebrate 50 years of service from the Good Samaritan Society and look forward to another 50 years. Butterflies are a symbol of renewal and new life in the Christian faith.

"It's only going to last a few minutes. It's something that most of us have never seen," Hanson said.

Another new event will be the disc golf tournament, beginning at 1 p.m. Saturday in Mayflower Park. Windom has had a disc golf course for a few years, and some of the game's local enthusiasts organized Riverfest's first disc golf tournament for this year.

People without disc golfing experience can attend a clinic at 10 a.m. Saturday, or they can simply show up and try the game during the tournament itself.

For those who like a slower-paced form of entertainment, the turtle races are scheduled from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, and they are strictly BYOT -- Bring Your Own Turtle. One turtle may be enough for a whole family, however.


5 p.m. Butterfly Release, celebrating 50 years of service by Good Samaritan Society, Sogge Memorial Center.

6:30 p.m. "Ghosts of Pirates Past" Game, sponsored by Windom Baseball Association, Island Park.

5:45 p.m. Kiddie Parade, themed "In the Future, I Want to Be ---," Winfair School.

6:30 p.m. Early Childhood Family Education Concert - Trisha & The Toonies, Winfair Gym.

7:30 p.m. Night of Praise, sponsored by the Windom Ministerial Association, BARC Auditorium.

10:15 p.m. Fireworks, near Windom High School.


7:45 a.m. to 10 a.m. Windom Area Hospital's Vickie Schendel Fun Run, start at Courthouse Square.

8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Prudence Masonic Lodge Cribbage Tournament, play begins at 8:30, Masonic Lodge.

9 a.m. start Concessions, downtown Windom.

9 a.m. start Craft Show, downtown Windom.

9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sand Volleyball, Cottonwood Lake.

9 a.m. start Men's Slowpitch Softball Tournament, Windom Recreation Area.

9 a.m. start Soccer Tournament, Windom Recreation Area.

9 a.m. start James W. Remund Memorial Tennis Tournament, Witt Park.

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Cottonwood Co. Game & Fish League Fishing Contest, Cottonwood Lake.

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sons of Norway Smorgasbord, Cottonwood Co. Historical Society.

9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Model Airplane Fun Fly, Windom Airport.

1 p.m. start Disc Golf Tournament, Mayflower Park.

1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Riverfest Idol Talent Contest, Courthouse Square.

4:15 to 5 p.m. Entertainment by the BARC Band, Courthouse Square.

2 to 4 p.m. Turtle Races, Downtown Windom.

4 to 5:30 p.m. Cookout, Courthouse Square.

6 p.m. Grande Parade, Parade Route.

8 p.m. Entertainment following parade and karaoke, Courthouse Square.

9 p.m. Windom Lions Club Dance, featuring "Cold Brew," Island Park.


9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast, the Eagles Club.

9 a.m. start Men's Slowpitch Softball Tournament, Windom Recreation Area.

9 a.m. until finished University of Okoboji Corvette Club Autocross Race, Windom Airport.

9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Karz 'n Trux Shine & Show Car Show & Swap Meet, Island Park.

10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Model Airplane Fun Fly, Windom Airport.

1 p.m. Ice Cream Social, Courthouse Square.

1 to 3 p.m. Sons of Norway Invitational KUBB Tournament, Island Park.

1 to 2:30 p.m. Tractor Pedal Pull, Downtown Windom.

1:30 p.m. Entertainment by REACH, Courthouse Square.

4 p.m. American Lutheran Church Concert Organ Recital, featuring Michelle Larson & Christine Larson Henderson, American Lutheran Church.