By Starrla Cray
MONTROSE, WAVERLY, MN It’s almost time for the first-ever Montrose-Waverly Craft and Community Fair, and the line up includes live music, book readings by local authors, horse-drawn carriage rides, and plenty of food and fun for the whole family.
The festivities will be Saturday, May 1 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Railroad Park in Waverly, just off of Highway 12.
In case of rain, the event will be at Humphrey Elementary School in Waverly.
The Montrose-Waverly Chamber of Commerce has been planning the fair for the past eight months, and the anticipation continues to grow.
“We’re really excited about the response we’ve gotten,” chamber president Melissa Morris said. “It’s going to be a ton of fun.”
A chili cook-off will start at 8 a.m., with the rest of the activities starting at 9 a.m. Admission to the fair is free, but there will be food and other items available for purchase.
There will be several vendors at the fair, including area businesses, artists, crafters, and non-profit organizations.
There will also be plenty of food available, including homemade ice cream, beer, hot dogs, pork chops on a stick, snow cones, mini donuts, and more.
Several businesses will have unique items for sale, including floral May baskets, jewelry, digital scrapbooking, garage decals, and more.
There will also be face painting, temporary tattoos, and hair braiding available.
“One of our big draws is the live musicians, which will play from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.,” Morris said. “We have some really good local talent, including Little Diamonds.”
Other musiciains will included Byron Sheppard, Steve Dwyer, Jim Cadwell, Matt Muller, Lin Mulhern, Randolph Norby, Jim Kirkendahl, Howard Kranz, Michael Dooley, and the Eve Hadden Trio.
The music will be broadcast live through Buffalo’s local radio station, KRWC, and the musicians will have CDs available for purchase at the fair.
At 10 a.m., four local authors, including Chris Husom, Linda Ruth Stai, Amy Hagberg, and Dale Stenseth will be doing book signings and readings at Waverly’s village hall.
Hagberg, who lives in Buffalo, writes about topics such as health, business, and spirituality. She also ghostwrites memoirs.
Stenseth wrote the book “Freightor Odyssey: Around the World in 130 Days.” He traveled around the world as a passenger on a working freightor, and his ship was chased by pirates near Somalia.
Village hall will also be a place to look at student artwork from the Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted School District.
A cherry pie eating contest, sponsored by Waverly Cafe, will take place at 11 a.m. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., there will be a pet shot clinic, followed by a pet parade at 1 p.m. Chili judging will begin at 2 p.m.
From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., there will be 10-minute horse-drawn carriage rides available for $2 per person, or $10 per family.
One highlight of the day will be the “water ball exhibition competition,” Morris said.
For the competition, local fire departments will use the water spray from their hoses to keep a large ball up in the air.
“Whoever can keep the ball in the air the longest wins,” Morris said. “I’ve seen it before, and it is so much fun. I think the kids will love it.”
The celebration is very “kid-friendly,” Morris said, with old-fashioned children’s activities planned by the Waverly Boosters.
“The fair will bring the community alive,” Morris said.
The cost to be a vendor at the fair is $100 per booth. There is no charge for non-profit organizations to have a booth.
For more information about the fair, registering a vendor booth, entering the chili challenge, or participating in an event, contact Morris at (612) 790-2236 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about the Montrose-Waverly Chamber of Commerce, go to www.montrosewaverlychamber.com.