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Grand Parade highlights Friday’s Turtle Fest

The pace and excitement of Perham's 34th annual Turtle Fest picked up steam Friday as turtle racing returned and the Grand Parade brought thousands to the community.

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Trayton Schroeder, center, coaxed his turtle to victory Friday morning at Perham's Turtle Park. Also competing was Jack Stoppleworth, left. Both boys hailed from Horace, N.D. Brian Hansel/FOCUS

The pace and excitement of Perham’s 34th annual Turtle Fest picked up steam Friday as turtle racing returned and the Grand Parade brought thousands to the community.

With more than 75 units registered, the Grand Parade was a treat for young and old. Children who had never seen a parade before mixed those participating in the parade itself - squirting water, throwing candy and chips and contributing mightily to the general bedlam of the event which so many had anticipated. Adults, both young and old, either rode herd on the streets lined with children or rest themselves in portable chairs along the route.

Friday’s other events included the second round of Turtle Races at Turtle Park, the Farmers Market at NP Park, Trolley Rides, Brew Fest on Main Street and a session of live music by Cassie and Elle at The Cactus.

A huge slate of events begins Saturday with the Fireman’s Pancake Feed at 7 a.m. Also set for Saturday is “The Safety Zone,” an All City Rummage Sale, Perham Health’s 5K, 10K and Half Marathon at Arvig Park, Trolley Rides, magic by Nick Bretz at the Back Porch, The Music and Arts Festival, Props over Perham, a ride for Project New Hope, New Creation Churches Hog Roast and Kempters Concert, the OTC Anniversary Carnival and in the evening, a street dance at The Brew along with music and specials at Disgruntled Brewing.

The Perham Chamber of Commerce has estimated that Turtle Fest brings 9,000 to 10,000 people to Perham each year.

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