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Main Street block closed for Governor's Fishing Opener community picnic

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A block of Main Street will be closed for five days in May for Nisswa to host a free community picnic with plans to serve 5,000 people on the Governor’s Fishing Opener weekend.

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The Brainerd Lakes Chamber along with the Nisswa Chamber will host the 2014 Governor’s Fishing Opener May 9-11, with headquarters at Grand View Lodge on Gull Lake in Nisswa. Nisswa will host the free community picnic Friday, May 9.

The council granted permission Wednesday, Nov. 20, for Main Street to be closed from Nisswa Avenue to Lakers Lane (formerly County Road 18), in front of the Public Restroom/Welcome Center building, from Wednesday-Sunday, May 7-11, to erect a huge tent for the community picnic. Plans are to use the tent Saturday, May 10, as well.

The Nisswa Chamber and community picnic committee also requested that South Main Street in front of Nisswa Square be closed Friday, May 9, for sponsors to have an event area set up to showcase their businesses, and for activities for families during the community picnic.

Talks will continue with the city as well as city law enforcement regarding Governor’s Fishing Opener events in Nisswa and possible road closings.

Frank Soukup of Grand View Lodge, Governor’s Fishing Opener event co-chair, said they asked to shut down streets in downtown Nisswa for safety and security reasons. He said it’s important to have all businesses in town and the council on board for this opportunity to showcase the community and businesses. Plans are ongoing and flexible, but the committee wanted to know it can proceed with the block-long tent on Main Street.

Carol Altpeter of Explore Minnesota Tourism gave a presentation about the community picnic and its significance to the city.

The free community picnic will run from approximately 4-7 p.m. Friday, May 9, in downtown Nisswa.

“It’s the main part of the Governor’s Fishing Opener that’s open to the public. It’s really a celebration of the community,” Altpeter said.

The picnic is family-oriented with family friendly displays, activities and entertainment. There are no vendors or sales, except for raffle ticket sales for a Larson boat.

The community picnic is the largest public event that is part of the Minnesota Governor’s Fishing Opener. It is a celebration of the community and provides an opportunity for a community to show its personality.

It gives the downtown area a chance to shine and show what it has to offer.

Many volunteers will plan, organize, coordinate, prepare and clean up after the picnic. A program with Gov. Mark Dayton is planned at 4 p.m., after which the food would be served.

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