Source: Sherman Publications

CreekFest 2013: Bigger, better

by David Fleet

May 22, 2013

Ortonville- When CreekFest returns next month, it will be a few weeks later than usual, will be expanded to two days, and with new events, will be bigger and better than ever, say organizers.

CreekFest, the annual environmental education event celebrating Kearsley Creek and local waterways will be June 29-30 in the village.

Last year, the event was spruced up with an accompanying carnival, which will return this year, sponsored by the Ortonville Lions Club. The carnival begins June 27 and runs through June 30 and will take place on the grounds of Brandon Fletcher Intermediate School, 300 South St.

Brand new to CreekFest this year is a large parade June 29 in which Jenny Olsen, a Brandon graduate and co-host of the PBS show Michigan Out-of-Doors, will be head marshal. Senator Dave Robertson will also be in the parade. To have your group in the parade, pre-register at the village offices.

High school students are invited to enter an essay contest detailing how best to care for Ortonville’s cool jewel, Kearsley Creek. Essays have a 1,000 word limit and will be accepted until June 3 at the village offices, 476 Mill St. Headwaters King and Queen will be awarded prizes and crowned at CreekFest.

The public is encouraged to join in the fun of the first annual Kearsley Creek Bed Races. Dress-up a twin bed in a theme of your choice. Teams of five should also dress to match their theme. For a $25 entry fee, you can race your bed in speed trials beginning at 4 p.m., June 29 downtown, and also participate on June 30 in Kearsley Crooked Creek Relay Races with what organizer Toni Mariucci calls “outrageous stunts” and other fun contests. Cash prizes given.

“It’s great fun and laughs, we all need those,” said Mariucci. “Beds wanted, and crazy, outrageous, want to have fun people needed.We need entries.”

Pre-register by June 22 at the village offices for the bed races.

Also new this year is an Amos Orton look-alike contest. To look like the founder of Ortonville, grow your beard now.

In addition to the new events, old favorites are returning, including Joe Rogers of Birds of Prey, joined by Evie Bosse; the critter contest, in which participants can decorate a trout ($50 entry fee); and educational exhibits and homemade, handcrafted goods will be on display and available for sale by local artisans.

Entertainment will be provided by musician Rob Norum and family-friendly comedians Steve Lind and Sal Demillo. The Ortonville Community Historical Society will host crafts and games.

“Don’t miss it,” said DDA Executive Director Molly LaLone. “This is the weekend to be in Ortonville for sure.”

For more information on CreekFest, call LaLone at 248-627-8070. For details on the bed races, call Toni Mariucci at 248-240-8619.