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Pipestone celebrates its watertower

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PIPESTONE -- With everything in Pipestone's vast history, why would the community choose to name its festival after the watertower? With only one other tower of its kind in North America, Pipestone can boast another historical landmark.

"Twenty-two years ago, the Minnesota Tourism Association had funds for a campaign called 'Celebrate Minnesota,' which was a movement for all sorts of towns to start up their own festivals." Mick Meyers, executive director of the Pipestone Chamber of Commerce explained about the celebration's past. "We tapped into their funds, and that was our very first festival -- right there in Watertower Park."

Twenty-two years later, the festival is much too large for the area underneath the tower. Instead, celebration-goers can flock to the courthouse lawn, where most of the events take place.

"We expect 4,000 to 5,000 people to show up," Meyers said, "Between Friday night's huge street dance and the parade Saturday afternoon, it's hard to put your finger on how many people actually show up."

Regardless of how many people Pipestone projects to punch in, Meyers made it clear that the bottom line is everyone there has a good time.

"It's really a lot of fun," he said. "The chamber pretty much takes care of everything to make sure the community enjoys themselves."

Here's the complete schedule of events for the 22nd annual Watertower Festival:


5:30 to 8 p.m. -- Pipestone Area School Band Hamburger Feed, First Farmers & Merchants Bank parking lot

9 p.m. to 1 a.m. -- street dance, Pipestone's historic Main Street


8 a.m. -- 5k Fun Run

8:45 a.m. -- Kids Fun Run

9 a.m. to 3 p.m. -- arts and crafts show, courthouse square

10 a.m. -- parade, Main Street and Hiawatha Avenue South

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. -- car Show-N-Shine, Central School

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. -- inflatables, courthouse lawn

2:30 p.m. -- Best Looking Pet Photo Contest, courthouse lawn

4 p.m. -- Legends softball game, Harmon Park

5:30 p.m. -- tractor pull, county fairground

6:30 p.m.-- Ranch Rodeo, county fairgrounds