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Turtles continue to saunter to the finish line in Nisswa

Nisswa's Turtle Races continue to attract big crowds on Wednesday afternoons through summer

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Though his turtle did not win the race, this young boy seems happy to have participated in the July 20, 2022, Nisswa Turtle Races.
Travis Grimler / Echo Journal
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NISSWA — Wednesday, July 20, was no special holiday, but that didn't stop throngs of people from crowding the turtle racing track.

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A splash of water is sometimes all it takes to coax a turtle toward the finish line. Spectators at the July 20, 2022, Nisswa Turtle Races tried that tactic.
Travis Grimler / Echo Journal

The nearly 60-year tradition of racing turtles in Nisswa is alive and well and attracting spectators from California or farther. Participants choose a bucket with a small amount of water and a turtle, place the turtles on a yellow line on the circular race track and watch them race at turtle speed to the finish line.

The event, which begins with registration at 1 p.m. and races at 2 p.m. every Wednesday, featured more than 300 racers on July 20 alone.

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People of all ages get involved in the weekly Nisswa Turtle Races, including this pair of adults on July 20, 2022.
Travis Grimler / Echo Journal

Travis Grimler is a staff writer for the Pineandlakes Echo Journal weekly newspaper in Pequot Lakes/Pine River. He may be reached at 218-855-5853 or travis.grimler@pineandlakes.com.

Travis Grimler began work at the Echo Journal Jan. 2 of 2013 while the publication was still split in two as the Pine River Journal and Lake Country Echo. He is a full time reporter/photographer/videographer for the paper and operates primarily out of the northern stretch of the coverage area (Hackensack to Jenkins).
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