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Sunshine greets Menahga Midsummer

Organized by the Menahga Civic and Commerce Association, the festival from July 9-11, 2022 offered food, drink, music and merriment.

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Among the royalty strolling through Saturday's parade were the 2022 St. Urho Queen and King. Jim Kraskey and Alice Kako were crowned during St. Urho Days, held in March.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise
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Menahga celebrated midsummer last weekend, offering fun for all ages.

Organized by the Menahga Civic and Commerce Association, the festival offered food, drink, music and merriment.

On Saturday morning, 76 youth clamored to catch and release as many sunfish as possible from the Spirit Lake fishing pier. The annual kids’ fishing tourney was sponsored by the Menahga VFW Auxiliary.

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Evan Malm, 9, delivers his third fish to the judges at Saturday's youth fishing contest.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

The top three anglers with the most fish received prizes, while oodles of goodies were awarded via a drawing.

While Evan Malm, 9, delivered his third fish to the judges on Saturday, mom Brianna noted that her daughter was swimming. “You’re done fishing, you can make a sand castle,” she said of the family atmosphere.

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This was Bennett Carty's eighth or ninth fish. The six-year-old had great success fishing with his dad and grandpa. From the Twin Cities, he was visiting family in Menahga for the weekend.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

Bennett Carty, 6, went fishing with his grandpa and dad. Midway through the derby, he had already caught eight or nine fish. He wasn’t even sure. Hailing from the Twin Cities, Carty was visiting family in Menahga.

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The Park Rapids Water Ski Team performed on Spirit Lake on Saturday afternoon, completing a three-tiered pyramid and other tricks.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

The Park Rapids Water Ski Team demonstrated its talents on Spirit Lake on Saturday afternoon.

2021 Miss Menahga Isabel Meyer and Little Miss Menahga Jayda Anderson, along with the contingent of princesses, are continuing their reign, due to a lack of 2022 pageant participants.

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Menahga royalty waves to onlookers during Saturday's parade. This is the second year of reign for the Miss and Little Miss princesses.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

Meyer was nonplussed, saying, “It’s exciting. I’m really looking forward to what’s ahead – fishing derbies, parades, pageants. I make my rounds.”

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The parade was led by Menahga Police Chief Adam Gunderson and Wadena County Sheriff Michael Carr, Jr., but close behind them were color guard from Menahga VFW Post 6206, the Park Rapids Marine Corps League Star of the North Chapter and Detroit Lakes.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

The festival’s pièce de résistance, unquestionably, is the grand parade, boasting color guards, royalty, marching bands, dancers, bagpipers, fire engines, Shriners’ antics and more. Young and old line the streets to watch this parade.

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The history-making UNC wrestling team were this year's grand marshal in the Menahga Midsummer parade.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

This year’s grand marshal was the entire 2021-22 United North Central (UNC) wrestling team, the first in school history to qualify for the state Class A tournament. UNC finished in sixth place in the program’s memorable trip to state.

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The Sebeka High School marching band tooted their horns during the parade.
Shannon Geisen/Park Rapids Enterprise

Other Menahga Midsummer events included an art and craft show, horseshoe tourney, baseball tournament, antique car show and live music.

The St. Urho Run/Walk celebrated its 41st anniversary this year.

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Patricia Tomperi won the Polaris Ranger in Sunday’s raffle drawing. Other winners were

DiAnne Bade ($1,000), Kelly Maninga ($750), Mary Kay Moe ($500) and Vanessa Wikman ($250).

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The Menahga City Council held a special meeting on Friday, Jan. 20 to speak to the two candidates.

Related Topics: MENAHGA
Shannon Geisen is editor of the Park Rapids Enterprise.
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