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Published June 13, 2012, 11:30 PM

Midwest Kid Fest marches on Friday

FARGO – Local kids are taking to the streets. No, they’re not rising up against authoritarian adults or protesting excessive veggie-filled meals. Friday’s march should be a peaceful one and a show of solidarity for kids’ and their best friends – their teddy bears.

By: John Lamb, INFORUM

FARGO – Local kids are taking to the streets.

No, they’re not rising up against authoritarian adults or protesting excessive veggie-filled meals.

Friday’s march should be a peaceful one and a show of solidarity for kids’ and their best friends – their teddy bears.

The 13th annual Midwest Kid Fest at Island Park, Fargo, features the signature Teddy Bear Parade. Starting just before 10:30 a.m. Friday, children and their stuffed loved ones will gather in the Dike West parking lot across from the Fargo park on Fourth Street.

At 10:30 about 800 area youngsters will march south down Fourth Street, then turn west on Sixth Avenue South, walking along the east and south sides of the park before turning into it at the south-west tennis courts. From there the trail leads up into the park for a day’s worth of games and vendors.

Weather permitting, organizers say as many as 10,000 people could attend the event throughout the day.

“This is a day about play. We don’t want people to sit,” says Carolyn Boutain, director of cultural activities for the Fargo Park District.

Attendees will have a hard time standing still, Boutain says.

After the Teddy Bear Parade more than 50 activities will be offered in the park until the event winds down at 7 p.m.

Kids can bop around playing belly bumper in inner-tubes around their waist, or participate in life-size games of Scrabble and checkers.

While some activities exercise the body, others work the mind. Members of River Keepers will set up a river crime lab so kids can find out what happens in our environment. Similarly experts from vector control will offer insights into the life and habits of mosquitoes.

The young artist will have a place to create crafts at Picasso Point.

When kids and parents do need to sit down they can take in performances on the main stage.

Penny and Pals will sing, dance and entertain at noon and again at 5 p.m. Scenes from Horizon Middle School’s “Beauty and the Beast,” Summer Arts Intensive’s “A Chorus Line” will also be performed. Magician Jeff Salveson, folk musician Paul Imholte and Elevate Rock School Student Band also perform.

The event is free, but snacks, but bring some money for meals from vendors like Fry Bread Tacos, Copper Kettle Corn, Pat’s Treats, Mama LaRonni’s Gourmet Italian Treats, Shaved Ice Snowcones.

However, Boutain adds, families that want to have a picnic are welcome to bring their own food and find a spot to sit, relax and take in the fun.

If you go

What: Midwest Kid Fest

When: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday

Where: Island Park, Fargo

Info: The event is free – concessions are extra. Attendees encouraged to bring a canned good to donate to Great Plains Food Bank. (701) 499-7788


Readers can reach Forum reporter John Lamb at (701) 241-5533

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