A well-received component to the annual Three Rivers Water Festival will return in 2012 following a six-year absence.
Mayor Tom Lowry and commissioners this week approved “Bratfest,” which is to be in operation during the Friday and Saturday of the Water Festival.
Rick Daniels, chairman of the Bratfest, told the commission during Tuesday’s meeting that he headed up the attraction for many years but decided to retire from the task in 2006. The Three Rivers Elks assumed Bratfest for a few subsequent years but the tradition quietly ended a few years ago.
Daniels said he recognizes the significance of Bratfest to the community festival, which prompted him to start it up again.
City officials OK’d the request, allowing the Bratfest team to use the concrete pad and parking area by the east side of the old hospital.
Organizers of the annual Three Rivers Water Festival community celebration announced last week that a pirate theme has been designated for the 2012 event.
“Ahoy, TR,” is the theme to be incorporated into the parade and other aspects of the 56th annual festival.
Long considered the unofficial start of summer, the Three Rivers Water Festival is set to take place June 14-16. The parade is slated for June 14, with a rain date of June 15. Potential participants are encouraged to center their entry on a pirate theme, or keep it relevant to boating or lake life.
Festival organizers said the roster of traditional favorites will return this year, including the car show, Lions Club ox roast, Women’s Club pie booth and KidsZone.
The second day of the Three Rivers Water Festival takes place today.
Highlights include the inaugural “Your Hometown Idol” competition, starting at 7 p.m. Midway games and carnival rides will be offered, and traditional favorites, including the Lions Club ox roast and Three Rivers Women’s Club pie sale, will be open for business.
Saturday’s agenda includes the old-car show downtown and a pancake breakfast at the Three Rivers Fire Department. Also scheduled for Saturday, a variety of games and activities in the KidsZone at Scidmore Park, a performance by the Bob Seger tribute band, “The System,” and the event-ending fireworks, slated to start at 10:25 p.m.
The 55th annual Three Rivers Water Festival kicks off today, and organizers have issued a notice regarding Saturday’s fireworks event.
Due to a change in provisions of the fireworks license granted to the festival by the state, an expanded “keep clear” area on Memory Isle Park will need to be observed by spectators. The newly expanded keep-clear area is the north portion of the park, including the waterway.
Fencing will be in place and the area will be closed at least one hour before the 10:25 p.m. fireworks show begins The provision is in place for the safety of spectators, according to event organizers.
The 55th Annual Three Rivers Water Festival kicks off Thursday.
Organizers said the annual event will feature the traditional attractions that have been a part of the Water Festival for decades. They include the midway games and carnival rides, the Lion’s Club ox roast, Thursday night’s parade, the old-car show Saturday and event-ending fireworks program Saturday night.
More details about the festival may be found at trchamber.com.
Supporters of the Scidmore Park petting zoo are continuing their effort to raise enough funds to keep the zoo open more than just one day a week.
Clarissa Myers, zoo keeper at the 90-year-old attraction, said a float in next week’s Three Rivers Water Festival parade will bring attention to the collection and the plight of the zoo.
As part of a cost-cutting measure, Mayor Ken Baker and commissioners are poised to reduce the hours the zoo is open from four days a week in the summer to noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays only starting July 2.
The zoo will be open noon to 5 p.m. over the course of the three-day festival. Myers said she is looking for volunteers to help work on the float and escort it through the parade. In addition, she is looking for volunteers to help seek donations at the zoo during the Water Festival.
More information is available at 269-268-0282