The Crane Watch Festival committee has announced the dates for this year's annual Crane Watch Festival. The festival will run from Friday, March 22 through Sunday, March 31.
The festival will include 10 days of fun-filled education, family activities, entertainment and community wide events taking place in Kearney, Minden and Gibbon.
The festival "Lift-Off Luncheon" will be held on Friday, March 22 with guest speaker, Thomas D Mangelsen. Mr Mangelsen is a world-renowned wildlife photographer and native Nebraskan. The luncheon will be held at the Younes Conference Center. Reservations for this event can be made by calling the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce.
Two new events for this year are the Crane Cake Decorating Contest and a sanctioned BBQ Contest. The Crane Cake decorating contest is hosted by the Colonels and Envoys of the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce. Teams of up to four will be provided sheet cakes and will create a crane cake with edible decorations. Prizes will be awarded at a reception on Friday, March 22 at the Younes Conference Center. Proceeds from the event will go to funding an intern scholarship at Rowe Sanctuary. Teams will need to register prior to March 1st.
The Chamber is also sponsoring a Kansas City BBQ Society sanctioned BBQ contest. Contestants will be competing for over $4000 in prizes. The event will be held at the Buffalo County Fairgrounds, and the public is invited to come out on Saturday, March 23. Judging will begin after noon, other activities will include a "backyard BBQ" amateur division, vendor booths and a beer garden.
Additional information on these events, and the entire listing of festival activities can be found at, www.cranewatchfestival.com. To register for the Crane Cake Decorating contest or the BBQ contest, please call the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce, 308-237-3101.