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Cokato Corn Carnival begins Aug. 8
August 1, 2011
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By Kristen Miller
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News Editor

COKATO, MN – With the cool, wet spring, the question of whether or not the corn would be ready for the 62nd annual Cokato Corn Carnival was an area of concern for committee members.

“It was really iffy at the beginning,” said Dorene Erickson, Cokato Corn Carnival chair. She was told not to worry however, and that, if necessary, Faribault Foods, which has been donating corn for the carnival since 1978, would buy it from someplace else.

Allan Anderson manages the corn operation at Faribault Foods and said he was worried early on, but the corn has progressed quite a bit since then.

“We’ve picked up a lot of ground with this warm weather,” Anderson said. “It’s made a lot of difference.”

Planting of the corn was roughly 10 days behind schedule this past spring, but the corn has since caught up to where it should be.

Faribault Foods plants all of its corn near Big Lake, where they run about 1,200 acres total.

About one-and-a-half acres is picked for the carnival, which amounts to 12 to 14 tons of corn, on average, Anderson said. In all, Faribault Foods donates about $2,000 in corn, taking into account farming and delivery costs.

With the corn worries pushed aside (free corn-on-the-cob will be served Tuesday and Wednesday 4-9 p.m.), the committee is also crossing their fingers for better weather than last year.

Erickson recalled how it poured rain Tuesday afternoon last year, but they were able to “sandwich in” the coronation before it rained again later that evening.

It was very hot and humid throughout the three days. The afternoon of the parade, the temperature on the State Bank of Cokato sign read 100 degrees.

This year, there will be 77 units in the parade, which begins at 6 p.m. Monday with the kiddie parade. Midway rides and the carnival will open following the parade. The parades will follow the same route as last year: Broadway Avenue, commencing at 7th Street East, north to 2nd Street, east to Millard Avenue, and ending at Peterson Park.

There are six girls among the contenders for one princess and one queen position.

The cut-off is seven girls, Erickson said, and at that point, there can be two princesses.

Entertainment on the main stage Wednesday will be The Killer Hayseeds, a Minnesota country music band.

An antique firetruck show will take place Wednesday, 2-8 p.m., in front of the museum.

Cash prizes and a drawing for a car, provided by Holt Motors, will take place at 10 p.m. Wednesday.

Full schedule

Sunday, Aug. 7

• 7 p.m., ecumenical church service, Peterson Park.

Monday, Aug. 8

• 1-5 p.m. Cokato Museum and Akerlund Studio open

• 6 p.m., kiddie parade. Participation awards are given to all who enter.

• Main parade follows.

• Food stands, carnival rides and Midway open after the parades.

• Music by Dave Herring Band of Dassel on the main stage at Peterson Park, sponsored by the Cokato Ministerial committee.

Tuesday, Aug. 9

• 9 a.m.-9 p.m., Cokato Museum and Akerlund Studio open.

• Noon, rides and Midway open.

• 2 - 7 p.m., Cokato library book sale fundraiser.

• Noon to 3 p.m., registration for children’s prize give-away

(14 or younger).

• 12:30 p.m. Corn Carnival button sales begin at information booths.

• 3:15 p.m., children’s drawing.

• 4-9 p.m., serving of free corn-on-the-cob with a Corn Carnival button.

• 8 p.m., the annual Miss Cokato coronation and introduction of visiting royalty.

• 10 p.m., cash drawing: four $100 prizes.

Wednesday, Aug. 10

• 9 a.m.- 9 p.m., Cokato Museum and Akerlund Studio open.

• Noon, Midway and carnival rides open.

• 2 - 7 p.m., Cokato library book sale and fundraiser.

• 2 - 8 p.m., antique firetruck show in front of the Cokato Museum.

• Noon to 3 p.m., registration for children’s prize giveaway.

• 12:30 p.m. Corn Carnival button sales begin at information booths.

• 3:15 p.m., children’s prize drawing from main stage in Peterson Park.

• 4-9 p.m., serving of free corn-on-the-cob with a Corn Carnival button.

• 7 p.m., entertainment at main stage: Mid-Minnesota Concert Band

• 8 p.m., entertainment at main stage featuring the Minnesota country band, The Killer Hayseeds.

• 10 p.m., cash prizes and car drawing. This year’s car is a 2012 Ford Focus provided by Holt Motors.

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