BY: RACHEL SMITH
I know, I know. I’ve jumped the gun just a bit. But with the nicer temps and the fact that I can see green grass in my yard instead of piles of dirty snow, my brain can’t help but think of all the fun coming down the pipe. Honestly, I don’t know how the students (and teachers, for that matter) make it through this last month of school.
I can barely make it through the day, I’m so antsy to get outside and just do stuff!
I think of Farmer’s Market. Of strolling through the Surf parking lot while munching on some sort of deliciousness from the food truck on site. Of browsing the many stands of homemade goodness and wishing I was as talented and patient as the folks who make those items. And lastly, I think of watching my kids dance to the live music, of them shaking their little booties to the beat and just being kids. The first Farmer’s Market of the season is May 19th, by the way. So mark your calendars!
Central Gardens opens for the season on May 1st. They’re open from sunrise to sunset, and if you’ve never been there, you definitely need to make it a point to stop and (literally) smell the flowers. Starting Friday, June 1st, they’ll once again begin the Fresh on Friday’s. This is one of their most popular events for a variety of reasons. Every Friday morning from June through August guests are able to purchase beautiful, freshly-cut bouquets from the Gardens, arranged by creative volunteers.
And then, there’s one of the best things Clear Lake has to offer. For real. I’ve talked to a lot of people over the years from other towns, and when I tell them that Thursdays on Main happens each and every week, they can’t believe it. I spend my Thursdays on a rotation, eating tacos at the VFW one week, and $5 Philly Cheese steaks at Rookies the next, followed by a visit to each and every food truck.
Don’t judge… I like food. A lot.
There’s nothing like strolling the streets of Clear Lake while your children run wild, begging you for money to play Laser Tag, or challenge the Robotics Club. Of course you’ll need to get them a fresh-brewed Root Beer, and probably an ice cream, maybe even a donut from the South Shore Donut Company. And don’t forget about the movie in the park at 9pm. It’s seriously one of the coolest things that happens in this town!
And then, just the other day, I ran to Walmart for something random and noticed they had 4th of July clothes out for little kids already. Of course I had to buzz through the selection and get something, because only in Clear Lake do you need at least three complete outfits to wear during all that Independence Day fun.
This year, being that the Fourth falls on a Wednesday, we’ll jump-start our activities with the opening of the Evans United Carnival on NOON on Saturday, June 30th. That night, Arch Allies will once again take the stage in the bandshell, performing covers from the ultimate era of Rock… the 80s. It’s sure to be a fun night of music, food, and drinks with our spectacular lake in the background.
Throughout the next few days, the carnival will continue to run, offering wrist band days as well as family fun day. Vendors will be positioned around the park, selling all your favorite carnival foods. I suggest getting a bucket of cheese balls and strolling through the various arts & craft tents.
On Wednesday morning, July 4th, the parade “Saluting Our Milestones” will mosey down Main Street. The theme is open to interpretation, as parade entries can do milestones in their business, in the community, or, there is always the old standby to just do a patriotic theme! Whatever they choose, it’s sure to be a hit.
So you see? I can’t help it. It’s hard not to get excited about all these upcoming events. And this doesn’t even cover a lot of what’s happening at the Lake. For a full listing and to see our calendar of events, go to www.clearlakeiowa.com
So enjoy your spring, but get ready to gear up for another full summer of Clear Lake fun!