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I’m just


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It’s not even May yet, and I can see my summer calendar filling up. And I love it!

Summer festival season starts this weekend

with Maifest in the Amana Colonies and Chalk the Walk in Mount Vernon. See pages 8 and 20 for more information on both of these must-check-out events. If you’ve never been to either: Mend your ways this time. You won’t regret it. I’m particularly excited about Chalk the Walk because the art being reproduced much larger than life on the streets of Mount Vernon is Maurice Sendack’s “Where the Wild Things Are.” One of my all-time favorite books from my childhood. Plus, having the Wild Things brought to life through chalk drawings makes an already family-friendly event even more appealing to my 5-year-old.

To the south, the Amana Colonies’ Maifest celebrates spring with a parade, followed by traditional Maipole Dancing, a Taste of the Amanas,

Wine Walk, barn dance and so much more

throughout Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Of course there’s plenty more to do this weekend and into next week. Check out Three Things on pages 8 and 9 and Get Out on page 20 for a few of our favorites. There’s tons more at our calendar at HooplaNow. com too! One that you shouldn’t miss is the 17th annual Marion Arts Festival on Saturday, May 16, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at City Square Park in Marion. The festival features 50 artists hailing from coast-to-coast, live music, food, a 5K race and a range of hands-on art experiences and demonstrations. Check it out at Of course I’m also really looking forward to RIVERen-


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April 30, 2009

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naissance: A Flood Anniversary June 11 to 13. There will be a flood documentary and time capsule presentation, rebuild reunion for all the businesses that have returned since the flood and the return of Floodstock, the musical event and fundraiser. Another anniversary event planned for this same weekend is the Run the Flood at 9 a.m. June 13. The runs wind through neighborhoods affected by the flooding. The 2.5-mile route goes from downtown, across the river and through the Czech Village and back across the river to downtown. The 7-mile run goes through Oakhill Jackson, across the river to the Czech Village and north to the Time Check area before crossing back over to downtown. The rest of the summer is jam-packed with events. In May, there’s Blues & BBQ in North Liberty and the Iowa Renaissance Festival in Amana. Plus both Uptown Friday Nights in Cedar Rapids and the Friday Night Concert series in Iowa City kick off at the end of the month.

In June: Iowa Arts Festival, Iowa City; America’s River Fes-

tival, Dubuque; Grant Wood Festival, Anamosa; Shakespeare Festival, Iowa City; and Laura Ingalls Wilder Days, Burr Oak. In July, of course there’s the Freedom Festival in Cedar Rapids, Coralville’s Fourth Fest and the Jazz Festival in Iowa City. There’s also: Classics at Brucemore, Cedar Rapids; Eastern Iowa Wine Festival, Amana; Solon Beef Days, Solon; Backbone Bluegrass Festival, Strawberry Point; Mississippi Blues Festival, Davenport; Bix Beiderbecke Festival, Davenport; and Nordic Fest, Decorah. The summer wraps up with St. Jude’s Sweet Corn Festival, Cedar Rapids; Bluesmore, Cedar Rapids; Jazz Under the Stars, Cedar Rapids; and Atkins Watermelon Days, Atkins. Whew! That’s a lot. And I’m not even naming them all. So get out and enjoy!

I’m just sayin’,

Hoopla 4.30.09  

Hoopla 4.30.09