BALDWIN — As one of the biggest and oldest events in Lake County, Troutarama brings many visitors to celebrate Baldwin's heritage each year, with Baldwin being the first place in North America brown trout were planted.

This year's festival will continue traditional fun events, but also will feature new events, said Troutarama Committee President Fred Olson.

"On Saturday, after the parade, there will be a car show on Main Street. The firefighter's water battle will also return to Main Street. Last year it was on a side-street. Also, during the youth games on Thursday, there will be a youth water battle. Kids will get to squirt each other with water," he said.

Another highlight of this year's festival will be the dedication of the world's largest brown trout sculpture at 11 a.m. on Friday, July 20, with members of the Village of Baldwin Downtown Development Authority and Michigan Department of Natural Resources taking part in the ceremony, Olson added.

"I hope Troutarama goes great and smooth. Hopefully the weather holds out and we get a lot of people," Olson said. "I hope it is bigger and better than ever."

Festivities begin at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18, with a special carnival preview with rides at $1 each.

Thursday is kids' day with youth games and contests for ages 1 through 13 beginning at noon. The Baldwin Fire Department penny hunt will be at 1:30 p.m.

The Little King and Queen contest begins at 5:30 p.m. at Wenger Pavilion. A horse pull will be at 6:30 p.m. at the West Trailhead Park followed by the kids and pet parade at 7 p.m.

The Scottville Clown Band will entertain folks with a concert at 8 p.m., and Torrey Warren will provide karaoke and music from 4 to 7 p.m. and 10 to 11:30 p.m. in the beer tent.

Friday kicks off with the youth fishing derby for ages 5 through 10 at the fish hatchery from 8 to 10 a.m. and continues on Saturday morning from 8 to 10 a.m. Fishing contest awards will be announced at 10 a.m. on Saturday at the fish hatchery.

Muscle and sole massages will be offered at noon on Friday and Saturday. Whispering Pines Petting Zoo will be on site from 4 to 9 p.m. on Friday and from noon to 9 p.m. on Saturday. There will be a bean bag tournament from 8 to 10 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday.

Onager will perform classic rock covers from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. in the beer tent. There will be a $2 cover fee.

Saturday's fun begins with a Troutarama 5K run/walk. Registration begins at 7 a.m. with the race at 9 a.m. at St. Ann's Senior Center.

A men's slow-pitch softball tournament will begin at 8:30 a.m. at Hollister Park.

Street entertainment by Mat Emerick will be from noon to 4 p.m.

Pixie's Ponies will be available onsite from noon to 9 p.m.

The Grand Parade is at 1 p.m. This year's theme is "A River Runs Through It." The grand marshal is Ernie Wenger, of Wenger Insurance Agency.

The Scottville Clown Band will perform after the parade at 2:30 p.m. in the beer tent.

A car show and cruise-in will be from 2 to 5 p.m. downtown, as well as the fireman's water battle.

Live music by Dew South will be performed from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. in the beer tent.

The Troutarama raffle drawing, with the opportunity to win $1,000, will be at 10 p.m. in the beer tent. Tickets are $2 each or three for $5. The grand prize will be $1,000. Participants don't need to be present to win.

On Sunday, the festival concludes with a men's slow-pitch softball tournament at 10 a.m.

Throughout the weekend, there also will be craft exhibits and sales at Wenger Pavilion and sidewalk sales downtown. Food booths and amusement rides also are available.