ESCANABA - Summer is a busy time in the Upper Peninsula. No matter what your interest are, you won't have to look far to find a fun event this summer. Here's a sampling of local events:
Kicking off the summer fun is Rapid River's annual Memorial Day Celebration on Monday, May 26, in Rapid River.
The 7th Annual United Way Mini Golf Tournament is Thursday, May 29, at the Family Fun Park in Escanaba from 5 to 7 p.m. Golfers can register for the event as individuals or as teams and trophies will be awarded for top individual and team scores in multiple age categories.
"It's just a fun way to come out and support the community, and it's not the pressure of a (traditional) golf tourney," said United Way of Delta County Executive Director Julie Mallard.
Registration for the event is $10 for ages 11 and up and $5 for ages 10 and under and includes unlimited rounds of mini golf and a goody bag with a $5 Family Fun Park voucher valid any time in the 2014 season. Golfers who register by May 21 will get a free t-shirt. Registrations can be made online at www.uwdelta.org or by calling the United Way at 786-3736.
The fun continues on May 30 and 31 with the Krusin Klassics Fun Run. The festivities begin Friday night with a parade of classic and special interest automobiles. Line up for the parade will start in Ludington Park at 6 p.m. with the parade starting at 7 p.m. and traveling along US-2, 41 and M-35 through Gladstone and on to Kipling.
The gates at the U.P. State Fairgrounds will open at 7 a.m. Saturday for the car show. Breakfast will be served by the Ford River Lions Club from 7 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. A dance will take place at 8 p.m. in the Ruth Butler Building and the drawing for the 2014 raffle car - a 1980 Camaro Z28 - will take place at 10 p.m. Raffle tickets are available the day of the event or online at www.krusinklassics.net.
June 21 is the annual Gladstone Crazy Daze celebration. In addition to businesses and vendors lining Delta Avenue, the U.P. Garden Tractor Pullers will be competing. Visitors to the event can watch the souped-up garden and lawn tractors pull weights across a clay track to see which machine is the most powerful.
June 27-29, the Island Resort and Casino will host the fourth annual Island Resort Championship Tournament. The tournament is one of the stops on the Symetra Tour, the LPGA's official developmental tour. For more information about the event contact the Sweetgrass Golf Club at 723-2251.
On July 4 and 5 the City of Gladstone will host its annual 4th of July Celebration. The festivities will kick off Friday the 4th with the Firecracker 5 Mile Run/2.5 Mile Walk. Registration for the event will begin at 6:30 a.m. and preregistration forms are currently available on the city's website at www.gladstonemi.org
Following the run is the 4th of July parade at 11 a.m. At 1 p.m. the Ultimate Air Dogs will return to Van Cleve Park on both Friday and Saturday. Paintball will also be available both days, and a fireworks display will take place at dusk on the 4th.
July 11 and 12 the 25th Annual Manistique Folkfest returns to Manistique. The event will kick off at 5:30 p.m. Friday the 11th with the Eva Burrell Animal Shelter Pet Parade. The celebration will continue though Saturday with the Manistique Paper Chase 5K and 10K Run/Walk, the 2013 Folkfest Hero, a silent action, a live auction with auctioneer "NASCAR Bob" Williams, and the Paul Bunyan Beer Garden.
July 24 though 27 the National Trappers Association will be bringing their 55th annual convention to the U.P. State Fairgrounds. The convention and expo will feature trapping demonstrations and vendors. Admission for the entire event is $10 for ages 12 and over. For more information visit www.nationaltrappers.com/convention.html.
Aug. 2 the William Bonifas Fine Arts Center will be hosting their 43rd Annual Waterfront Art festival in Ludington Park. The festival will include music, food, a youth art tent, and a juried art competition. Awards will be presented for each category as well as a special award for best in show.
"We're soliciting for artist right now," said Cindy A. Bender, events coordinator for the Bonifas Fine Arts Center. The deadline for submissions is June 12 and applications are available online at www.bonifas.org or at the center.
The Daily Press Back to School and Children's Health Fair will be held Sunday, Aug. 3. This year, the event will be held at the U.P. . State Fairground's Ruth Butler Building.
Aug. 11 through the 17 the Upper Peninsula State Fair will open it's gates for its fifth year of being independently run and Michigan's only State Fair. In addition to fair staples like animals, exhibits, and food, the fair brings in free grandstand acts for fair guests. This year Firehouse and Sebastian Bach will be performing on Aug. 12; Easton Corbin will perform Aug. 13; Blood, Sweat & Tears, featuring Bo Bice will perform Aug. 14; and Joe Diffie will perform Aug. 15.
The Delta County Jaycees will be hosting their 19th Annual Duck Races in Gladstone's Van Cleve Park on Aug. 23. This year's grand prize for the Duck Races is a 2014 Harley Davidson 883 motorcycle. Tickets for the races are one for $5 or six for $20 and are available from any Delta County Jaycee.
The day kicks off with the Run, Walk, or Waddle 5K at 10:30 a.m. Registration for the race begins at 9 a.m. and participants can pre-register at www.deltacountyjaycees.com. A complimentary picnic will follow the race starting at 12:30 p.m. and running until 2:30 p.m. Kids' games and a bean bag tournament will begin at 1 p.m. Live music by Say What will be provided from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Aug. 29 through the 30th, the Cabela's National Walleye Tour will make its stop in Escanaba. Anglers will take off from Ludington Park starting at 7 a.m. Weigh in begins at the Ludington Park Harbor at 3 p.m. For more information visit www.nationalwalleyetour.com.
Starting Aug. 29 and running through Labor Day on Sept. 1, the U.P. Steam and Gas Engine Association will present their 39th Annual Show at the U.P. State Fairgrounds. Admission tot he show is $5 per person per day or $10 for a weekend wristband. Exhibitors and children under 14 are admitted free.
Aug. 30 the Rock Lions Club will be having their annual Labor Day Parade. The time of the parade start has yet to be determined.