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Edgerton Dutch Festival starts Thursday

EDGERTON — Attendees of the 69th annual Dutch Festival this week will have the opportunity to get a birds-eye view of Edgerton and the rolling hills and valleys beyond thanks to a new addition to the schedule — tethered hot air balloon rides.

Though weather-dependent, organizers are excited to offer the new feature. The balloon will be tethered in the Edgerton City Park, with rides offered from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday.

Festival committee member Shela Gunnink said the balloon rides are just another activity for people to enjoy during the three-day festival, which continues Thursday through Saturday.

With evening events Thursday and Friday, the busiest day is Saturday, starting with an early morning pancake breakfast for the public at the Emergency Services building and continuing until midnight. Great Frontier Bull Riding, mutton busting and fireworks cap off the festival.

“All day there’s something going on for all ages,” Gunnink said.

Mutton busting is a new addition to the bull riding event this year, and is coordinated by the Edgerton FFA Chapter. FFA members are selling tickets for children to have the chance to fill one of 12 slots to ride a sheep during intermission.

Returning this year is the Picture Perfect Challenge, which has teams recreate a photo — from its downtown location to the number of people in the photograph, the shadows and accessories used.

“Last year they had an absolute blast doing it,” Gunnink said.

A co-ed volleyball tournament planned to begin Saturday morning still has room for a couple more teams. If interested, call Katie Bobbin at (507) 215-0879. Registration is required.

A full schedule of events follows:

Thursday

6 to 7:30 p.m.: Youth Fire Safety & Water Challenge course, learning about fire extinguishers

5 to 10 p.m.: Midway open

7 to 9 p.m.: Inflatables in the park

Friday

3 to 4 p.m.: Sidewalk Chalk Art Contest, Main Street in front of NAPA

4 to 9 p.m.: Inflatables, City Park

4 p.m. to midnight: Midway open

5 to 8 p.m.: Classic Car Cruise-In, corner of Main and Mill streets. Beer garden and DJ

5 to 8 p.m.: Gloria Jean Tribute performance, City Park

6 to 9 p.m.: Tethered hot air balloon rides

8:30 p.m. to midnight: IV Play in concert, with beer garden and concessions open

Saturday

6 to 10 a.m.: Pancake and Sausage Breakfast, Emergency Services building

7:30 a.m.: Dutch Fun Run, including 5K walk, 5K run and 10K run, registration at the corner of Main and Howard streets opens at 6:45 a.m.

9 a.m.: Kids Pedal Tractor pull, City Park tennis courts

9 a.m.: Co-ed Volleyball Tournament, sand volleyball courts

10 a.m.: Sixth annual Bean Bag Tournament

11 a.m.: Swimming contests and Penny Dive, city pool

11 a.m.: Fishing Contest and Turtle Race, Rock River Park & Campground pond.

11 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Vendor/Craft Fair, City Park

11 a.m.: Firemen’s Water Challenge, intersection of Main and Howard streets.

Noon to 5 p.m.: Inflatables, City Park

Noon to midnight: Midway open

1 to 4 p.m.: Free swim

1 to 2 p.m.: Picture Perfect Challenge

1 to 2 p.m.: Sanford AirMed helicopter visit and tours

2 to 5 p.m.: Tractor Show, City Park

6 p.m.: Parade with “Family Vacation” theme featuring neighborhood floats, bands and antiques.

7 to 8:30 p.m.: Mechanical Bull, DJ

8:30 to 10 p.m.: Great Frontier Bull Riding, with mutton busting, City Park

10 p.m.: Fireworks, City Park

10:30 p.m. to midnight: Mechanical Bull, DJ

Julie Buntjer

Julie Buntjer joined the Globe newsroom in December 2003, after working more than nine years for weekly newspapers. A native of Worthington, she has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism. Find more of her stories of farm life, family and various other tidbits at The Farm Bleat

(507) 376-7330
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