BROOKINGS, S.D. — Kites will still fly high in the sky, but there will also be bikes galore on the ground at this year’s annual Mother’s Day kite festival, appropriately renamed the Brookings Family Kite & Bike Festival.
Set for noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 9 at Fishback Soccer Fields, Medary Avenue South and 20th Street South in Brookings, this year’s festival will include a new event for bike riders.
“We’ll have obstacle course run by police officers,” said Sherry Rasmussen, who owns Sioux River Bicycle & Fitness in Brookings with her husband Robb. “We encourage kids to bring their bikes to ride there. We’ll be set up for all ages.
“We were going to have a bike festival,” Rasmussen said, “then we thought it would be great if we could join the kite festival. I contacted Lynn Verschoor at the Art Museum. She liked the idea, and passed it on to the Optimists who also liked the idea.
“It’s a great event for families, especially since it’s Mother’s Day.”
May is Bike to Work Month and the day after the festival, Monday, May 10, is the kick-off to Bike to Work Week, Rasmussen said.
A drawing for a new bike will be held at the end of the festival. Proceeds will go to the Brookings Community Bicycle Collective, an organization that promotes the use of bicycles as a sensible and sustainable mode of transportation in the Brookings area.
Mike Gee, of Jamestown, N.D., will bring his collection of show kites, known for their massive size and unique designs. People attending are welcome to bring their own kites to fly.
Fire trucks and an ambulance will be on site for people to look over, with emergency personnel available to answer questions.
Donovan’s Hobby & Scuba Center from Sioux Falls will sell kites and do face painting.
South Dakota State University Physics Professor Larry Browning will make and launch rockets.
The Brookings Soccer Association will sell concessions.
Festival sponsors are the South Dakota Art Museum, the Optimist Club of Brookings, Children’s Museum of South Dakota, Sioux River Bicycles & Fitness and the Brookings Police Department.
For more information, call the South Dakota Art Museum, 605-688-5423.
Photo: Mike Gee, a member of the American Kitefliers Association, will bring his collection of show kites to the Kite and Bike Festival on Mother’s Day.