Garrison Play Days set to celebrate 25th anniversary this weekend
“The schedule is two full pages packed with something for everyone so it’s no wonder why many people annually mark their summer calendars to include it. Our board and members work very hard on the plans and executing it all weekend. Our reward is seeing how much fun everyone is having and to see such a happy celebration for my hometown of Garrison.” ~~ President Erik Huff of the Garrison Commercial Club
GARRISON — Garrison Play Days will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2021 with the event scheduled Friday-Sunday, July 16-18, in Garrison.
The three-day event is put on by the Garrison Commercial Club Board and its members. People from surrounding communities and tourists from near and far attend each year to the many traditions that take place during Garrison Play Days. The event hosts a variety of attractions and events for all ages and interests. With the exception of a couple events, all activities are hosted in the heart of downtown Garrison.
Organizers ask people to check the event listing for the specific locations of each event to be hosted at various Garrison businesses. Schedules are available in most businesses and will be available at the information booth during the weekend.
The event has activities planned from 5 p.m. Friday through 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Erik Huff, Garrison Commercial Club president, stated in a news release.
“The schedule is two full pages packed with something for everyone so it’s no wonder why many people annually mark their summer calendars to include it,” Huff said. “Our board and members work very hard on the plans and executing it all weekend. Our reward is seeing how much fun everyone is having and to see such a happy celebration for my hometown of Garrison.”
The weekend kicks off with a community dinner 5-7 p.m. Friday for an all-you-can-eat barbecue under the big tent hosted by the Garrison Commercial Club and catered by the Green Lantern Bar & Grill. After dinner, a co-ed softball tournament and a meat raffle will begin at 6 p.m.
Live music featuring Lake Effect from McGregor begins at 8 p.m., performing until midnight. Cost is $5 for the live music to be performed under the big tent. Ages 16 and under are free.
Saturday starts off with at 8 a.m. breakfast under the big tent, again hosted by the Garrison Commercial Club and catered by the Green Lantern Bar & Grill. There are many events during the day to include arts and crafts, vendor tents, children can register to win a bike at the Garrison Fire Hall, softball games and the first medallion clue with more clues given throughout the day will be offered.
The Play Days parade begins at 11 a.m. featuring grand marshals Bucky Weitnauer and Dennis “Charlie” Charles and more than 40 parade entries. There also will be a corn feed, pie and bake sale, tacos in a boat and more. The Kids Zone will open with carnival games where children can collect tickets to win prizes. A climbing wall will also be available.
Returning just for the 25th anniversary is the beloved Minnow Races on Saturday, with a kids show called Treasure Beyond Measure, a kids’ corn coin hunt and an ice cream eating contest.
There will be a free Ski’s Exotic Petting Zoo Sunday and a kids’ show with Comedian Don B, who will keep the kids laughing with his slapstick comedy tricks and a fun kids puppet show called Sonflower Puppets, the release stated.
“We are very excited to have three free kids shows going on during Play Days Weekend for the celebration of our 25th Anniversary,” Carolyn Huff, Garrison Commercial Club board member, said. “I think the kids will get a real kick out of these entertainers. ... There’s so much for the kids to do!”
For the adults, there will be a beer garden, bingo sessions, medallion hunting, softball games and acoustic music Saturday afternoon by Joe McGown, cribbage tournaments, Texas Hold’ Em, a Friday meat raffle at the Garrison VFW and a Saturday meat raffle at the Harbor Inn. There also will be fireworks at the Garrison Ball Field.
Shane Martin will perform 8 p.m. to midnight Saturday under the big tent. Admission again is $5 and free to those 16 and under.
The annual Sunday Car Show will take place 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Rocky Bottom Bar, formerly known as the Y Club, and a two-person scramble golf tournament at Northwoods starting at 11 a.m.
The Garrison Play Days Raffle will be at 5 p.m. Sunday in downtown Garrison next to the information booth. Winners do not need to be present to win. A person can buy raffle tickets at most Garrison area businesses, plus they will be available at the information booth. Tickets are $2 with cash prizes and gas cards from Holiday and Speedway and from Garrison Family Foods.
For more information or for the detailed schedule of events, go to garrisonmn.com and click on Play Days 2021 or visit the Garrison Play Days Festival Facebook page.