Wakefield's Balloons 'N BBQ events set

Wakefield's Balloon Days festival  is celebrating it's 15th year, and has joined forces with the Wakefield BBQ Bash to create Balloons 'N BBQ, taking place Sept. 21-23. Organizers hope the earlier date will allow balloon pilots more lift-off opportunities, according to Val Bard, Wakefield Community Club member.

"The pilots told us 'we can land almost anywhere,' so we'll try it," Bard said.

Balloons 'N BBQ has something for all-ages. Coinciding with grandparents day at Wakefield Community Schools, the Kite Guy will have kids activities on Friday.

The first lift-off of the celebration is scheduled for 4 p.m., Friday afternoon. The famous steak feed will follow at 6 p.m. At 7 p.m. Easton Field will host the homecoming football game against Omaha Nation-Macy.

Saturday, Sept. 22 is packed with events, beginning with a sunrise balloon lift-off, weather permitting. At 7 a.m., enjoy omelets, cooked by Wayne State College's baseball team before they take the field for a double-header against Mount Marty at Eaton Field. The color run starts at 7:30 a.m.

The King of the Wings will be decided Saturday afternoon, but kids can get in on the cooking action with the Kids Burger Bash at 9 a.m.  At 10, the car show, street fair and kids activities begin on Main Street.

At 10:30 Saturday morning the Wakefield Heritage Organization is sponsoring Darrel Draper as Teddy Roosevelt at the Little Red Hen Theatre. Draper will be presenting Roosevelt as if  the Rough Rider were on the campaign trail for his third presidential term. The event is free and open to the public.

Kids are invited to the Amazing Tour de Wakefield at 3 p.m. The new event is essentially a scavenger hunt on bicycles for those interested. The whole family can ride along on the tour. During the street fair, the 4-H Petting Zoo will be set up north of the post office.

The parade will come down Main Street at 1:30 p.m., then at 3, the BBQ Bash will begin, with food served at 5. During the BBQ Bash, three bands will play live downtown. Paradox will start the music at 4 p.m., followed by a mariachi act at 5:30 and the Front Porch Pickers at 6:30.

The last balloon lift-off  of the day is scheduled for 4 p.m. Saturday's festivities close out with the Fireman's Dance and karaoke starting at 8 p.m.

Balloons 'N BBQ comes to a close on Sunday, Sept. 23 with a sunrise lift-off at Wakefield School. All balloon lift-offs are dependant on the weather. Balloons 'N BBQ is organized by the Wakefield Community Club and Wakefield Youth Rec Program, as well as other Wakefield area groups. For a full list of events, visit wakefieldballoonfestival.com, or search Wakefield Balloon Days on Facebook.

The Wayne Herald

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