DOWAGIAC – This weekend, as the Greater Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce hosts this community’s summer festival, families can expect food, music, carnival rides for the kids and fun. new activities during the summer in the city on Front Street.
Now in his 36’se year, the two-day festival on July 15 and 16 features Vertical Edge Entertainment’s range of children’s attractions, including the High Striker and Rock Climbing Wall and carnival rides such as the Dixie Twister, Wizzer and bumper cars.
Live music begins Friday at 10:00 a.m. while local favorite A Touch of Texas plays until 5:00 p.m. On Saturdays, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., Over the Top takes the stage at the musical tent located in Beckwith Park. Food vendors will be located on Beeson Street, next to the park, and town center restaurants will be open, with some adding hours to their normal working day – opening earlier than normal to accommodate the festival lunch crowds .
The Sand Pirate, professional sand sculptor Janet Moore Schrader, will sculpt beach sand into a very large sandcastle on Friday and Saturday. She’ll share building tips while a free sandbox will be available for kids to create their own sculptures. At the end of the festival, guests can take part in the castle storm – knocking down the sandcastle before the sand is washed away. This event is guaranteed by New Leaf Landscaping.
On Saturday, the Miss Dowagiac Scholarship Competition Committee will be on hand, welcoming Miss Dowagiac 2020, Lynsie Stolpe and Court. Children can dress up in their royal attire and join the Princess Parade at 2pm on Saturday, led by Miss Dowagiac. Youth visiting the Pageant booth will receive their own wreath, while supplies last.
Festival-goers of all ages will enjoy the quirky and wild excitement of lawn mower racing, organized by Outlaw Tractor Racing.com. The race starts at noon in the town parking lot between Cass County Council on Aging and Twistee’s. Festival goers are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs for the race which runs from 1 to 4 on Saturday.
Dance student performances take place on Commercial Street on Saturday, as Green Dance Academy performs from 11 a.m. to noon, followed by Miss Michele & Co., from noon to 1 p.m.
Vendors and trade stalls are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days. Pregnancy Helpline Center will have its thirty-one foot mobile unit on site offering visits as well as a feeding and baby changing station with free nappies. Also, from 1-4 p.m. on Friday, an ultrasound technician will be on hand to do limited prenatal ultrasounds (no gender revealed). To benefit from a free ultrasound, bring proof of pregnancy from a doctor and be between 8 and 30 weeks pregnant.
Ascension Borgess Lee Hospital will be on hand to provide children’s bicycle helmets as well as blood pressure checks. Sandy and Rachel’s Medical Massage will be hosting yoga sessions at their Front Street booth.
This year’s festival sponsors are: Bakeman’s Barber, Baker’s Rhapsody, Creative Vinyl,
- MottL Realty, Deck the Halls, Dowsett Chiropractic, Dowagiac Elks Lodge No. 889, Dowagiac Pharmacy, Edward Jones office of Kim MacGregor, Farm Bureau Insurance, Janel Industries, John and Curt Brakes and Alignment, JVTR, Lyons Industries, Mennel Milling, Midwest Energy, Olympia Books, Southwestern Michigan College, State Farm Insurance-agent Fred Milton,
The Barton Group, The Marshall Shoppe, Who Knew Consignment, Wightman, Wolverine Mutual Insurance and Yarn on Front.