OSCODA – The annual Paul Bunyan Days festival will return to Oscoda on Friday, Sept. 20 through Sunday, Sept. 22 on Furtaw Field located in downtown Oscoda.
“Paul Bunyan Days festival is going to be an amazing weekend full of exciting activities, carnival rides, great food, live music, and chain saw carving. I can’t think of a better way to introduce myself to the community than through such an awesome event,” said Oscoda-AuSable Chamber of Commerce Interim Executive Director Zach Scholten.
Admission buttons will be sold at the gate for $5 when gates open at 9 a.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. on Sunday. Children 16 years old or younger will receive free admission.
Weekend festivities are set to include Schmidt’s Amusement carnival rides, a chain saw carving competition and auction, a craft show and local food vendors including Wiltse’s Brew & Pub Restaurant and Mancino’s.
There will also be many events from last year returning including face painting, live music, a corn hole tournament, a lumberjack look alike contest, a beard contest, a saw dust coin dig, raffles, a pie eating contest, the Paul Bunyan Burger contest awards and much more.
Throughout the weekend, The Oscoda Lions Club will be holding a cash raffle where five lucky people will walk home with $1,000. The drawing will take place at 5 p.m. on Saturday. Additionally, many local nonprofits will be offering different activities to participate in including the Oscoda Robotics team, the Oscoda swim team and the local boy scouts among others.
Friday, Sept. 21
Open 4 till 10 p.m.
Schmidt’s Amusement Carnival will begin running at 4 p.m. till 10 p.m. on Friday, 11 a.m. till 10 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. till 5 p.m. on Sunday. A weekend ride bracelet is $40, a daily is $20 or individual tickets can be purchased for $1.25 or 20 tickets for $20. Rides will vary on the amount of tickets needed, but typically two to four are necessary.
Beginning at 4 p.m. the carvers participating in the weekend chain saw carving competition will participate in a three hour quick carve. At press time, there was the expectation of five to seven carvers participating, but no confirmation was given. The quick carve creations will be sold at the Sunday afternoon auction at 1:30 p.m.
Sponsors for the carving competition and auction include Oscoda Area Convention and Visitor’s Bureau (CVB) which will be supplying the award money for the competition. As well as, Hume’s Tree Care, LLC supplying the logs for the carvers and McDonald’s supplying meal vouchers and Little Caesar’s dropping off pizzas for the carvers.
Saturday, Sept. 22
Open 9 a.m. till 10 p.m.
Beginning at 9 a.m., gates will be open to browse craft vendor items until 5 p.m. The annual chainsaw carving competition will also commence starting at 9 a.m. with the carving of their competition piece. They will carve until 5 p.m. On Sunday they’ll begin again at 10 a.m. and finish at 1 p.m.
The corn hole tournament from last year will return once again this year. Registration will begin at 11 a.m. and the tournament will commence at noon. There is no cost to register; however, all participants must have a $5 admission button to participate.
The tournament will be held on Saturday at noon to 5 p.m. and Sunday 11 to 3 p.m. Saturday will be the preliminary round and Sunday will be the finals. Interested parties are asked to contact the OACC at 739-7322. There is a $500 prize pool sponsored by CVB.
Other events beginning 11 a.m. are set to include face painting by R.I.E. at 11 a.m. till 4 p.m. and the return of the Alpena Community College (ACC) Lumber Jack and Jill look alike competition. The look alike competition encourages participants to visit the ACC Oscoda campus booth wearing their own style of lumberjack fashion. Interested parties will participate in a photo shoot. One male and one female will be contacted Saturday evening and will receive a $50 gift card. The competition will run from 11 a.m. till 4 p.m.
At noon there will be live music being played by Ronn Fryer and he will play until 4 p.m. on Saturday. On Sunday, he’ll begin at 10 a.m. and end at 3 p.m.
More competitions will continue into the afternoon, starting at 2 p.m. the annual saw dust treasure dig sponsored by Northland Area Federal Credit Union will commence. Last year kids aged two to 12 years old were welcome to participate all at the same time. According to the OACC, this year participants will dig in two to three different age groups. The dig will run until 2:30 p.m.
A final competition of the evening will be the return of the beard competition at 3 p.m. Interested parties are asked to check-in at center stage between 3 and 3:45 p.m. Beards will be judged by the judging criteria which includes: size, quality, color, style & presentation and creativity. Judging and awards will begin at 4 to 4:30 p.m. To round out the evening the lions will draw for their much anticipated $1,000 raffle where five lucky people will receive $1,000 each.
Sunday, Sept. 23
Open 10 a.m. till 4 p.m.
Starting Sunday morning, gates will open at 10 a.m. and close at 4 p.m. Live music with Ronn Fryer and the continuation of the chainsaw competition will begin at 10 a.m. along with the craft vendors.
At 11 a.m. the carnival will open for the third and final day and the corn hole finals will begin. The carnival will be open until 5 p.m. and the corn hole finals are set to end by 3 p.m. including the presentation of prizes.
The chain saw auction and judging will begin at 1:30 p.m. The awards will follow shortly after at 2 p.m. At 2:30 p.m., the 2019 Paul Bunyan Burger contest winner will be announced. There will also be a drawing for a gift certificate from the winning restaurant.
Also at 3-3:15 p.m. participants will be able to register for a free pie eating contest sponsored by Roger’s Family Foods. The pie eating contest will commence at 3:15 p.m. Gates will be closed at 4 p.m. but the carnival will be open until 5 p.m. Access to the festival will be free after 4 p.m.
Scholten encourages guests to bring some additional cash for raffle items or vendor shopping as all establishments may not have credit card capability. Credit cards will be accepted for the auction on Sunday, according to Scholten.
OACC would like to thank its platinum business sponsors including Chemical Bank, Sheila Malewska and Edward Jones, Smart Life CBD, Northern Roots Provisioning Center, the CVB, Oscoda Septic Services and P&L Manufacturing.
For more information about Paul Bunyan Days visit the OACC at 4440 US-23, AuSable Charter Twp, call 739-7322 or email Scholten at email@example.com.