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Ox Cart Days rolls into Star Prairie Aug. 17-19

Ox Cart Days rolls into Star Prairie Aug. 17-19. Tom Lindfors / RiverTown Multimedia

The summer festival circuit continues with Ox Cart Days, Aug. 17 — 19 in Star Prairie. This year's pared down schedule begins on Friday evening with Bethany Lutheran's Pie & Ice Cream Social starting at 6:30 p.m. at the village ballpark followed by the Queen's Coronation at 7 p.m. under the shelter. Since you got all gussied up for the coronation, you might as well stay for the Street Dance starting at 8 p.m., featuring Minneapolis-based rock and dance band Fogpilot.

Day 2 continues Saturday at the ballpark at 8 a.m. with fast pitch softball. Take a break from softball and sign up for the bean bag tournament at 10 a.m. Bags start flying at 11 a.m. This year's Vendor Craft Sale features more vendors than ever and runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Kids activities get underway starting at 12 noon with Emery's Train Rides followed by a kids bean bag tournament at 1:30 p.m and games, face painting and a Story Walk all beginning at 2 p.m. Festival favorite Pickles the Clown will show off her amazing repertoire of balloon bending skills also at 2 p.m. Paddlers hit the water at 1 p.m in the popular canoe and kayak race on the Apple River. Sign-up begins at noon at the Apple River Inn.

This year in addition to their annual collection of used eyeglasses, hearing aids and cell phones, the Lions Club will be providing free vision screening for kids beginning at 2 p.m. According to educational experts, 80 percent of learning is visual. So if a child can't see well, s/he can't learn well. Lions KidSight USA Foundation is a nationwide program to safeguard the vision of children aged 6 months through 6 years. Lions in the USA already screen over a million kids per year through statewide and local programs often known as "KidSight."

"We're hoping to raise enough money to help pay for one more of these vision screening machines. Our district has purchased four of these machines which cost about $7,000 a piece," said Lions Club organizer Chris Boardman.

Boardman, who just completed certification in how to use the vision testing machine believes at some point the Lions Club could offer their services to local school districts.

"Both the Roberts and Somerset clubs have people who are also certified to use the machines. So we're hoping to actually be able to provide this service to schools at some point," said Boardman.

Saturday night find out how lucky you are at B.I.N.G.O. starting at 6 p.m. Then get your feet moving to the music of F N Radio, a six-piece band covering music from the 70's to today's current hits across all genres of music. The Street Dance starts at 8 p.m

Start your Sunday off with the pancake breakfast at the Bingo Building at 8 a.m. followed by the Bethany Lutheran Church Service at the ball field at 9:30 a.m. You can practice your bows and curtsies at the Queen's Tea starting at 11 a.m. under the shelter at River Island Park. The Kiddie Parade kicks off at 1:45 p.m. on Main Street followed by the Grand Parade featuring Grand Marshal and master barber Val Dierks at 2 p.m. But it is not over yet!

Don't miss your chance to win at the 50/50 Raffle and kayak drawing which will take place two hours after the parade at the ball field. Winners of the Medallion Hunt will also be announced at that time.

"We're going to have a couple quilts too, a king size and a full size, one adult and one kids," added Boardman.

All proceeds go to Lions Club International.

Ox Cart Days is presented annually by the Star Prairie Lions Club. For more information visit the Lions Club website at or contact Boardman at 715-377-6915.