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Pine River offers variety of activities, on river and off

From craft markets to duck races to fishing events, Pine River, Backus and Hackensack offer plenty to do.


Pine River Market Square


On Fridays through Sept. 27, locally grown plants, vegetables, local foods and arts and crafts items will be for sale at the market from 2:30-5:30 p.m. on Barclay Avenue in Pine River.

Flea Market

On Saturdays, the Pine River Saturday Flea Market is held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. along the Paul Bunyan Trail in Pine River, south of the Chamber Information Center building on Highway 371.

Pine River Duck Races

On Fridays, June 21 through Aug. 16, cheer on a duck at the Pine River dam. Registration starts at 1:45 p.m. with the first race at 2 p.m.

Pine River Art Show

The annual Pine River Art Club Show will be Thursday through Saturday, June 27-29, at The Warehouse community center in downtown Pine River. The show features a variety of quality paintings and other visual expressions created by area artists. Admission is free to the public.

Pine River Summerfest

Pine River’s annual Summerfest celebration will be Friday through Sunday, June 28-30. Events include an arts/craft Fair, duck races, parade, kids’ games, softball tournament, food fest, Prairie Fire Children’s Theater, kids’ fun run, antique tractor/car show, a 5K run and Lions Fly-In Breakfast.

Cass County Fair

The Cass County Fair in Pine River will be held Friday through Sunday, June 28-30, at the fairgrounds. Check out 4-H exhibits, vendors, motocross and ATV mud races, talent show, horse show, farm animals, carnival rides and more.

Community Garage Sale

The annual Pine River Community Garage Sale and Merchant Sidewalk Sales will be held Friday and Saturday, Aug. 2-3. Pie on the Porch will be at 8 a.m. Friday, Aug. 2.

Backus Cornfest

Cornfest will take place Saturday, Aug. 10, featuring a parade, games, food, music, beer garden, street dance, fireworks and, of course, the corn on the cob feast at noon.

Lakes Bluegrass Festival

The Lakes Bluegrass Festival will take place Wednesday-Sunday, Aug. 21-25, at the Cass County Fairgrounds in Pine River. The event features national and regional band concerts, plus workshops, jamming, camping, food and family fun. All of the bands are booked with groups coming from all over the country. For information, visit

Arts Off 84

The Arts Off 84 art crawl will be Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, between Pine River and Longville. Visitors have the opportunity to view and purchase artists’ handmade items as they travel from site to site.

Pine River Heritage Days

Take a trip back in history with Pine River’s Heritage Days festival Friday and Saturday, Sept. 13-14. Events include the annual quilt show featuring colorful handmade quilts from area quilters; a free hobo stew served at the Pine River Information Center; historic displays at the depot; and other fun activities for adults and kids.


Longville Turtle Races

Wednesday afternoons, June 5 through Aug. 21, the turtle races are held in downtown Longville starting at 12:30 p.m.

Longville Classic Car Show

A classic car show will be Saturday, June 15, in Longville.

Hackensack Sweetheart Canoe Derby

Hackensack’s annual Sweetheart Canoe Derby will be Saturday and Sunday June 15-16 at the city pier on Birch Lake featuring professional tandem, solo, business and citizen races.

Kids’ Fishing Contest in Hackensack

The weekly Kids’ Fishing Contest at the Hackensack city fishing pier, Birch Lake, will be held Tuesdays, June 18 through Aug. 20, at 11 a.m.

Hackensack Sweetheart Day

The annual Sweetheart Day celebration will be Tuesday, July 9, in Hackensack.

Summer Theatre in Hackensack

The Northwoods Arts Council Summer Theatre production will be Friday through Sunday, July 12-14, at the Community Building in Hackensack.

Taste of Longville

The 15th annual Taste of Longville will Friday, Aug. 16, on Main Street in Longville. Longville restaurants, civic organizations, churches and the Chamber of Commerce will provide tastes for every palate. The Longville Lakes Arts Alliance provides arts, crafts and music.

Art and Book Festival in Hackensack

The 16th annual Northwoods Art and Book Festival in Hackensack will be Saturday, Aug. 17. The event features a variety of artwork on display and many books to peruse.

Oktober Fest in Longville

Oktober Fest will be held Saturday, Sept. 21, at the Longville Fire Hall. The event, a fundraiser for the Longville firefighters and Longville Chamber of Commerce, includes polka, waltz and other dances; German sauerkraut, brats and beer; and games.

Chainsaw Sculpting in Hackensack

The National Chainsaw Sculpting Invitational will be held at the city park in downtown Hackensack Friday through Sunday, Sept. 27-29. The event features carvers from across the nation, food, crafts, games and lumberjack show.


Walleye Tournament

Saturday and Sunday, June 1-2, is the annual Leech Lake Walleye Tournament, a non-profit family event with proceeds going to area organizations.

Fourth of July

Walker’s Fourth of July celebration will Wednesday, July 4, including Fun in the Park, Kiddie Parade, Fourth of July Parade, fish fry, beer garden and live entertainment.

Yikes! Bikes Bike Tour

Yikes! Bikes Bike Tour is Saturday, July 13, and benefits the Leech Lake Area Habitat for Humanity. This ride features 18- 40- and 60-mile tour routes, live music and a variety of foods at the rest stops and at the finish.

Walker Bay Days

Walker Bay Days are Friday and Saturday, Aug. 2-3. The event includes live music, entertainment, activities and a scavenger hunt, boat and sailboat rides, a 5K run, volleyball tournament, kids games/inflatables, food vendors and more.

Leech Lake Regatta

The Leech Lake Regatta sailing event is Saturday through Monday, Aug. 10-12. The event includes racing, sailing, campfires, music and more.

Ethnic Fest

The 22nd annual Ethnic Fest is Saturday, Sept. 14, featuring arts, crafts and cuisine from a variety of different countries.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
(218) 855-5889