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Brickyard Days, Cromwell Harvest Fest are here

Both Wrenshall Brickyard Days and the Cromwell Harvest Festival return this weekend, bringing a shot of community togetherness.

In Wrenshall that togetherness comes with a game of cow patty bingo.

Wrenshall cheer coach and Brickyard Days organizer Jolene Johnson explained the process behind the unusual game of chance, which involves a student walking a cow over a giant grid with 200 squares.

“One of our students will halter-walk a cow around all the squares, whatever square the cow does its business on will be the winner of the 50/50 raffle,” Johnson said. “It’s something the senior class used to do as a fundraiser, and we thought it would be fun to bring it back.”

Brickyard Days begins today, Friday, with a 3 p.m. tailgate food fundraiser before the 4 p.m.

Raptors varsity football game at Jim Erickson field in Carlton. There will be hot dogs, chili and soup for sale, with all proceeds going to the Raptor Scoreboard Fund.

It’s the first year Brickyard Days will be in September, a decision Johnson said was prompted by competing with too many other events in August and a lack of volunteers.

“Everyone wants to enjoy Brickyard Days, but it’s hard to find people to work for the event,” Johnson said. “We have a few more now, thankfully. We’re hoping high school students who need community service hours to graduate will help out, too.”

(Contact Johnson at 218-390-3610 to volunteer.)

The Wrenshall event really hit its stride on Saturday, with a pancake breakfast at the school 7-11 a.m., a 5K race at 9 a.m. (registration starts at 8 a.m.) and a 3-on-3 basketball tournament.

The big event — a parade down Broadway — begins at noon. It’s free to enter, just line up by the school after 11, Johnson said.

Following the parade there is an open house and ice cream at the Wrenshall Fire Hall and plenty of fun at the Deer Park, including bingo, carnival rides, facepainting and crazy hair, a pie and bake sale, a dunk tank, ball pit and food and craft vendors.

Also new this year is the “lucky duck hunt” for the little kids. Johnson said 500 tiny yellow and multi-colored ducks, each about the size of a thumbtack, have been hidden around Wrenshall, including on the school grounds and park. Whoever has the most ducks by 5 p.m. Saturday will win some lucky duck prizes, she said.

Bricks Pub is also hosting a cornhole tournament after the parade and will have live music that evening. Everyone is invited to watch the “Super Mario Movie” in the park at dusk.

Harvest Fest

This weekend also marks the annual Harvest Festival, bringing three days of food, fun and music. All events take place at the pavilion unless noted.

On Friday, there’s a steak fry 4-7 p.m., and a high school football game at 7.

Saturday is the big day, with craft and food vendors all day, the Alzheimer’s Walk at 9:30 a.m., kids games 10-11 a.m., and a pie social 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The youth cornhole tournament for kids begins at 11 a.m.

Adults can have fun too, with their own corn hole tournament starting at 1:30 p.m., music in the park 1-4 p.m., a beer garden 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The muni will hold a Bloody Mary bar Saturday morning, followed by patio games noon to 8 p.m and live music until midnight.

On Sunday, there is community worship at 10 a.m. at the pavilion. The Riverside Drifters show runs noon to 2 p.m.. Revelers can also head to the muni to watch the Vikings play at noon and enjoy patio games all day.