57th annual Troutarama begins in two weeks

BALDWIN — Continuing for nearly six decades, Troutarama will once again return to the streets of Baldwin in the coming weeks. The 57th annual Troutarama kicks off on July 17 and continues through July 21. Most of the fun is centered in downtown Baldwin, while a few events are held at Hollister Park and West Trailhead Park. As expected, the festival will have returning favorites like food, drink and craft vendors, games, parades, music, a carnival and more, but organizers also added a few new events to the schedule. This year, Troutarama will include the Scottville Clown Band performing in the beer tent, a teen dance, a pet parade joining the kid’s parade, a 5K run and a women’s tennis tournament. “The events change over the years,” said Fred Olson, Troutarama president. “Things change and interests change, and volunteers and groups come up with ‘Hey, we want to do this.’ That’s how the 5K run and the tennis tournament came about.” The theme for this year’s parade will be “For the Good Times,” and the family of late Edie Mitchell, past Troutarama chairperson and Baldwin businesswoman, will serve as the Grand Marshall. The kid’s parade is open to children 13 years of age and younger, but anyone is welcome to join the parade with any pet they’d like. Festival favorites not to be missed include the youth fishing derby, parade and the entertainment offered in the beer tent, Olson said. When the festival started 57 years ago, organizers wanted to celebrate Baldwin’s trout fishing heritage, but also wanted to establish a festival because Lake County did not have a fair at the time. With most of the events centrally located in downtown Baldwin, organizers hope the festival benefits local businesses as well. “The thought of the people who started this thing is to bring people downtown,” Olson said. It has been estimated that 20,000 people attend the festival, and a vast majority of the events are free of charge, Olson added. For more information, including a complete schedule and registration forms, visit
www.troutarama.com
.