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Frontier Days is roaring for 2021

Annual FD event is a go says organizer; Theme is Roaring 20s

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Fort Dodge firefighter Meghan Spears proudly carries the flag Saturday morning as she leads the department's trucks during the annual Frontier Days Parade Saturday morning along Central Avenue in downtown Fort Dodge.

FORT DODGE — Live music, buckskinners, jugglers, a chainsaw artist and oh, yes, a parade, will all be part of the Frontier Days festivities this summer.

The annual three-day event at the Fort Museum and Frontier Village will once again take place after the COVID-19 pandemic forced its cancellation in 2020.

“I’ve checked with the state and the city and it’s a go,” said Terry Cook, chairman of Frontier Days. “We are 12 weeks out.”

Frontier Days is planned for June 4, 5 and 6. Cost is $5 for a wristband. That one-time fee gets attendees in for the whole weekend.

“We are ordering 10,000 wristbands,” Cook said.

The theme will be the Roaring ’20s, a time period in the 1920s where the U.S. experienced an economic boom. Pinstriped suits, tuxedos, handkerchiefs and fedora hats were popular for the men. For women, beaded evening dresses, knee-length skirts and long pearl necklaces were common.

Cook said there’s no shortage of entertainment on tap.

“A timberjack show is coming in,” he said. “A 14-foot solar powered bubble machine coming in. Hillbilly Bob is scheduled to come back.”

Peter and Penelope of Polka Dot Entertainment are booked for the weekend.

“They both juggle and at night they have LED lights in their juggling that looks really cool,” Cook said. “They are escape artists. She does balloon art. She will also do a fire show at the end of the night. They also have stilts — that should draw a lot of attention. They are a hoot.”

The Frontier Days parade will be Saturday at 10 a.m. downtown.

The parade marshals will be announced in April.

Clint Henik, a chainsaw artist, will perform on Friday and Saturday. About 10 pieces of his work will be auctioned off Saturday evening, Cook said.

An arm wrestling competition will be held Saturday afternoon in the Opera House.

Various children’s games, buckskinner camp and food vendors will be available all weekend.

The Tank Anthony Band, which produces a soulful country sound, will perform on Friday night. Saucy Jack, a power trio cover band and local favorite, will take the stage on Saturday night.

A church service is tentatively planned for Sunday morning. Additional entertainment is still being booked, Cook said.

“Family oriented,” Cook said. “That’s what we want. We are really looking to have a good turnout. With the last year we had, we want it to be family oriented and we want people to come out and have a fun weekend with us.”

Cook said volunteers are needed for the event. To volunteer, contact the Fort Museum by email at fortmuseumfd@gmail.com or Terry Cook by email at cooksnovelty63@yahoo.com or call 515-570-6156.

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