Riverboat Heritage Days wrapped up on Sunday, and I bet no one said they were happy to return to work. For those who participated in the festivities, it was the perfect kind of summer weekend filled with activities throughout.

Although, the weather did get a little hot and humid on Saturday, especially during the parade. Good thing the fire department was there to cool onlookers with a nice mist of water on an otherwise breezeless day. Others handed out freezies, and even threw a couple water balloons. Thank you!

My favorite part of the weekend was the fun float down the Ripple River to the Mississippi. Not only is it a beautiful route, but I was really proud of all those who came together to put on such a successful event.

There were over 50 kayaks, canoes and tubes that made the trip. Volunteers were stationed along the way, helping paddlers to enter and exit the water safely. Ice cream floats were served at Aitkin County Park at the end.

A friend from the cities who came up to visit was initially nervous to kayak on the river for her first time. When the day was over, she couldn’t stop talking about how much fun it was, how beautiful the scenes were, and how she couldn’t wait to do it again.

I’d say the River Trails Committee met its ultimate goal. We cleared the river and held a successful event to expose locals and visitors to the great river resource we have right here  in our backyard.

Looking back at the Riverboat Days events, it is amazing to think that it is all done through the work of volunteers. It really goes to show that our town is what we make of it. It can be as great as we wish to make it.

So next time you hear someone complain about how someone should have done things differently, tell them to look in the mirror and realize that they are someone, too. If you enjoy having town celebrations, consider getting involved to make them even better. I’m sure those organizing wouldn’t turn down a few extra volunteers.

The  fulfillment that comes along with seeing it all come to fruition is indescribable. I could only encourage everyone to see for themselves by getting involved in a cause that’s close to their own hearts. That’s how our town will really thrive and shine.

Also, don’t forget to give a pat on the back to all those who worked really hard to make a fun-filled weekend for many families and friends of the area.

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