Best Bets: Cool off Friday for magical Saturday

Published 8:56 am Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Austin Parks and Recreation Department will host its second Free Family Fun Night at the Austin Municipal Pool on Friday, July 14. There will be games, prizes and a performance by deejay DeeAnn Randall.

“It’s a really interactive event,” said Austin Parks and Recreation Program Intern Molly Noterman.

Last year, the event drew a crowd of 268 participants.

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Noterman said this year’s event will start off with hula-hoop and jump rope contests. These will be followed by a watermelon push swim relay. There will then be open swim time, followed by a diving for treasure game. The night will finish with a cannonball contest.

Participants will also get a chance to play pingpong Ruckus.

“That’s a new game this year,” Noterman said. “We put pingpong balls in the water and two teams have buckets on each side of the pool. They then try to collect as many pingpong balls as they can. The team with the most wins.”

The slide, rock wall and diving board will all be open during the event.

The first 200 people to enter will get a free beach towel from the Austin Positive Action Coalition.

“The activities are not limited to certain ages,” Noterman said. “It’ll be something great the whole family can enjoy.”

The Free Family Fun Night will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday. For more information, call 507-433-1881.

Saturday Sweet Stories — Harry Potter

Dust off your wands and brush up on your magic because Harry Potter is coming to Sweet Reads Book and Candy Store this Saturday, July 15.

OK, maybe not Harry Potter himself, but children and adults alike are encouraged to dress up in their Hogwarts best and hear the first few chapters of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.”

“It’s all about reading and getting kids exposed to the written word,” said Sweet Reads owner Lisa Deyo. “We have a new generation of readers and some of them don’t know Harry Potter.”

Deyo said that kids will get the opportunity to make their own wands after the reading.

This event is one of many themed reading events being held at Sweet Reads every Saturday from now until the beginning of school. Participants are encouraged to dress up for the events.

The themes for the upcoming July weekends will be animals on July 22 and pirates on July 29.

“Kids get be exposed to literature with a group of friends and listen to good readers,” Deyo said about the events.

“Get smarter and sweeter at Sweet Reads during our Saturday sweet reads,” she added. “Say that 10 times fast.”

Saturday Sweet Reads – Harry Potter will begin at 10 a.m. For more information, call 507-396-8660.

Weekend at a glance


•Second Floor Art Gallery Grand Opening – Craig Groe, 5 to 7 p.m. at the Austin ArtWorks Center. Open House celebrating the opening of the art show featuring the work of Craig Groe, born in Austin in 1959, now living in Mankato. Free and open to the public. Exhibit from July 14 to Aug 19. For more information, call 507-434-0934.

•Free Family Fun Night at the Pool, 7 to 9 p.m. at the Austin Municipal Pool.  Sponsored by the Austin VFW, APAC and the City of Austin. For more information, see above or call 507-433-1881.

•“Strikepoint” Handbell Concert, 7 p.m. at Westminster Presbyterian Church.  Strikepoint” is a community handbell choir from Duluth, MN organized in 1984.  They have been touring annually since 1986, both in the US and Europe. Free will donation ($10 suggested) requested. For more information, call Ann Flisrand at 507-438-4079.

•Hayfield Chicken Fry, in Hayfield.

•LeRoy Summerfest, in LeRoy.


•Saturday Sweet Stories – Harry Potter, 10 a.m. at Sweet Reads Books and Candy Store. For more information,  see above or call 507-396-8660.

•Book Signing, 1:15 p.m. at Sweet Reads Books and Candy Store. Virginia Larson will be signing copies of her new book “The Book of Lurch,” a memoir of her hunch-backed, club-footed cockatiel. For more information, call 507-396-8660.

•Austin Park and Recreation Men’s D/E Softball Tournament, at Todd Park. Form more information, call 507-433-1881.

•Hayfield Chicken Fry, in Hayfield.

•LeRoy Summerfest, in LeRoy.


•“No One Will Marry a Princess With a Tree Growing Out of Her Head” Auditions, 6:30 to 8 p.m at  the Historic Paramount Theatre. A Matchbox Children’s Theatre production. For ages 8-18. For more information, call 507-437-9078.

•LeRoy Summerfest, in LeRoy.