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Don Wilkins set up a purple martin colony on Long Lake. The martin houses are out in the lake and sit a few feet above the water. (Don Wilkins/For the Enterprise)

Park Rapids purple martin colony site of annual festival for birds

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PARK RAPIDS - Don and Monika Wilkins will showcase their martin colony on Long Lake in Park Rapids at the seventh annual Minnesota MartinFest.

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The event kicks off bright and early. Don invites early birds to come before 8 a.m. to "wake up with the martins."

The colony he has over the water is the largest in Minnesota, Don boasts.

"I've been active in the martin hobby for many years," he said.

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