Pine Knot News - A hometown newspaper with a local office, local owners & lots of local news

Cloquet Fourth is ready for blastoff


June 28, 2019

Courtesy July Fourth committee

A large crowd watches fireworks over the St. Louis River from Veterans Park during last year's July Fourth festivities.

Parade ... check.

Family fun ... check.

Fabulous food ... check.

Fireworks ... check.

"We are ready," Alyson Leno said earlier this week. She's Cloquet's July Fourth coordinator. "We are ready for a rocking, family-friendly, amazingly fun, old-fashioned, small-town Fourth of July."

Well, almost.

There's still the small matter of volunteers to help with setup the evening before, plus a few to help out on the Fourth. Leno said she is optimistic that people will come through, just like major sponsors Sappi, Kwik Trip and Enbridge - along with many other business and individual donors - did to fund the annual event.

The fun actually starts Thursday at Pinehurst Park with the Sawdust 5K (see Page 16). After the 11 a.m. parade, folks are encouraged to stroll past the fire hall for a root beer float and admire the giant fire trucks before heading to Veterans Park for an entire day of family fun, ending with the fireworks at 10:10 p.m. This year's festivities brings back the standard favorites - with $13,000 in fireworks, up from $12,000 last year - plus other activities at Veterans Park that people have grown to love and look forward to, such as the pie eating contest, kids digging in sand for quarters, wiffleball, bouncy castles, face painting, pony rides, an outdoor movie and even bingo. Almost everything is free, to encourage families and kids to come out and enjoy the day, Leno said.

There is a new scavenger hunt at Veterans Park for older kids. "We wanted to give some of the teens and tweens who have outgrown the bouncy houses and who don't like wiffleball something new to do," Leno said.

There's lots going on away from the park as well.

Amy Louhela

New this year is a 3-on-3 basketball tournament starting at noon at Pinehurst Park. At Dunlap Island, folks can check out the car show at the NorthEastern, as well as a train display or go paddleboarding or kayaking on the river.

Music lovers can find live music at Veterans Park from noon to 8:45 p.m. this year, starting with Runaway (an '80s band from Duluth), followed by popular local cover band The Jury and wrapping up with Woodblind, an acoustic ska band out of Duluth that makes it impossible to not dance, or at least get your toes tapping.

Find the complete schedule of events inside this week's Pine Knot News, in a special pull-out section on pages 9-12. Happy Fourth.


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