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Parish Festival plans have begun

Though it's still a few weeks away, preparations for the 39th Annual Parish Festival at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Detroit Lakes are already in full swing.

Festival co-chair Sue Braun described it as "a labor of love" for herself and fellow co-chairs Joe and Sandie Boyer, as well as planning committee members Mary Hager and Monsignor Tim McGee.

Besides the planning committee, there are approximately 150 parish volunteers involved in organizing, setting up and running the festival, as well as cleaning up afterwards -- and every one of them is needed, because there is so much work involved in the process.

It may be a lot of work, but "it's a lot of fun too," Braun added.

Unlike some parish events, this festival is entirely open to the public -- as illustrated by the fact that it's held at the Kent Freeman Sports Arena as opposed to the Holy Rosary Parish Center.

"It's not just a Catholic event, it's a community event," Braun explained. "It's a time to meet and greet all of your friends."

And of course, there is plenty of food, live and silent auctions, raffle drawings, kids games and more.

"We start out with the outdoor mass at 10:30 a.m., outside the arena," Braun said. "The doors (of the arena) open at 11:30 a.m., and it runs until 4 p.m."

Kids will enjoy the cake walk, face painting and many other games, while adults can shop the country store and white elephant sale, then stroll through displays of the many live and silent auction items, or sign up for the 50/50, "Big Money" and raffle drawings.

The white elephant sale includes "gently used" musical instruments and sports equipment for kids as well as a variety of items for adults -- all at a much more reasonable price than could be found if you purchased the items new.

The live auction has "all kinds of good stuff" lined up, from household goods and appliances to boats and other useful items, Braun said -- while the silent auction includes "all kinds of beautiful baskets" containing things like toiletries, baby essentials, and even a picnic basket or two.

"We have everything imaginable," Braun said. "People are really creative."

There's "bingo for everybody" as well, and what is for many the event's main attraction -- food, food and more food!

"We have tacos in a bag, taco salad, mini doughnuts, popcorn and pizza, brats and pulled pork, either in a sandwich or a full dinner," Braun said. "There's pie and ice cream, free coffee -- and a beer garden with cold, 'adult' beverages."

Though the parish festival is a fundraiser that benefits the church's community outreach programs, the real purpose of the Parish Festival is, as the poster says, "food, fun and fellowship."

"It's Holy Rosary's opportunity to invite the community to come in and have fun for a day," Braun said. "Everyone is welcome."

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 18-plus years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Detroit Lakes School Board. 

(218) 844-1454