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'A new Turtle Fest': 35th Turtle Fest expands on familiar favorites

Turtle Fest is returning to Perham June 12-16. (Perham Focus File Photo)

The 35th annual Turtle Fest is set to kick off next week with a host of new events alongside the classic favorites.

"I'm telling people it's a new Turtle Fest," Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dan Schroeder said.

A Turtle Fest Committee was founded in January with 12 local business people to renew the festival and "put a little more jazz in it," Schroeder said.

The marquee event of the week will be the Main Street Fair on Friday and Saturday. Main Street will be closed for a block party featuring over 45 craft and food vendors. When the sun sets on Friday night, Redline will be performing in front of Brew Ale & Eats until midnight.

Saturday the main event moves to the west side of Main Street for a Beer, Boil and Bluegrass celebration with live music by The Cropdusters. Disgruntled Brewing will also unveil a new beer called "City Limits," which will only be available in Perham.

Schroeder said he's looking forward to everything coming together for the community celebration.

"This is what it's all about," Schroeder said.

Turtle Fest Highlights

Turtle fest officially begins with the Turtle Races on Wednesday morning at 10:30 a.m.

The $500 Medallion hunt begins at noon. Clues will be released every day until it's found.

Zorbaz on Little Pine Lake is hosting a kick-off party from 3 p.m. to close with live music and deals on food and beverages.

Thursday night features a parking lot party at Papacitos and a BBQ, pie, and ice cream social at St. Henry's. After dinner, check out the walking tour of historic downtown Perham sponsored by the Otter Tail County Historical Society. The tour is meeting at NP park and begins at 7 p.m.

Turtle Races are back on Friday, with heats beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Rib Fest is at Central Market from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. followed by the grand parade at 6:30 p.m.

Saturday is jam packed with a half marathon starting at Arvig Park at 7 a.m.

If running doesn't sound appealing, the fire station is hosting a pancake feed from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.

After pancakes, head over to beer, boil and bluegrass with live music by The Cropdusters at Pine Island Fish Company from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The city-wide Rummage Sale is sure to be a hit for deal seekers.

Magician IMAGINICK will headline Magic on Main in the afternoon.

The Midnight Cruisers Classic Car Show will be set up in the back parking lot of Ma's Little Red Barn from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m

The day's fun wraps up with a hog roast and concert at New Creation Church from 4 to 6:30 p.m. with the concert set to start at 7 p.m.

Turtle Fest finally comes to a close Sunday with the Perham Rotary Breakfast from 8 a.m. to noon at Lake's Cafe.

Trolley Rides will be running all weekend long and boarding at the Chamber of Commerce and Ma's Little Red Barn.

Go to www.perham.com/turtlefest for a full schedule of events.

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