MIKADO - Relax and enjoy yourself Saturday in Mikado at a day-long family-friendly summer celebration called Mikado Days.
This event dates back to the 1960s and Mikado Township rebooted it in 2011 after a decade-long hiatus, Township Supervisor Jesus Yruegas said. Mikado marked its 125th birthday that year, and the public wanted to know if the day of festivities would ever return. This year's Mikado Days theme focuses on the community's small businesses.
Line-up for the parade is from 10-11 a.m. at Tait Road, north of Mikado, Yruegas said. All entrants are welcome, and this year all veterans from any military branch are invited to ride a 2 1/2 ton truck with a trailer. It's a way of saying "thanks" to veterans for serving the country, and Yruegas said he's hoping to fill the truck and trailer.
Local fire departments will spar in a water ball competition after the parade north of the Mikado Civic Center on F-41, Yruegas said. The civic center is south of the F-30 and F-41 intersection. Kids carnival games will be there and can be played for a small cost. Alcona County 4-H will have a bake sale and paint faces for a small fee and county Relay for Life group will sell hats. A crafts sale and flea market is also planned.
The Midland River Hogs will play an 1860s style baseball game against the Mikado Clubbers, Yruegas said. The rules of the game were quite a bit different back then, although the distances between the bases haven't changed.
"It's very enjoyable, people love it every year," he said. "It keeps getting bigger and bigger, and it's free to the public if people want to bring a chair or whatever."
Mike Maturen will perform a magic show inside the civic center, and Grace Community Church of Oscoda will perform a puppet show, Yruegas said. Flute carver Joe Cox will demonstrate how he makes the instruments, offer them for sale and play a few tunes.
Reed's Car Cruise also is set for Saturday, organizer Bob Reed said. It's open to anyone, and past cruises have drawn 40 to 50 classic cars and their drivers. That includes a number of 1950s Chevrolets, especially Reed's 1955 two-door sedan.The first 50 cars get goody bags with dash plaques commemorating Mikado Days, and there are other prizes as well.
Call Reed at 736-0741 to enter, or just drive to the civic center starting at 9 a.m. with the entry fee of a non-perishable food item that will go to Alcona St. Vincent De Paul Society's food pantry in Mikado.
"That's the most important thing about it, really, and that works out, we usually get a good pallet of food for them," he said.
Activities will run until around 4 p.m. or later, with Order of the Eastern Star of Lincoln selling food during the day, Yruegas said. The Mikado American Legion's pig roast and barbecue chicken dinner starts at 4 p.m. The American Legion is at 2205 Alger St.
For more information about the day and its activities, call the township at 736-7721, Yruegas said. Volunteers are also needed as well.
"We've been fortunate, we've finally started getting some volunteers to help us," he said. "Without them it'd be impossible for us, the planning committee, to do it."