As the COVID-19 pandemic has local/area summer activities falling like dominos – Safety Town, Summer Camp, all Parks
& Rec programming, Polk County Fair, Erskine Water Carnival. – the 2020 Ox Cart Days Festival is still on. But organizers acknowledge the pressure is mounting. Meantime, they’re monitoring the fate of this year’s Minnesota State Fair.

    The 2020 Ox Cart Days committee wants to let the community know they are pressing on with festival plans for August and will follow the timeline of the Minnesota State Fair before making a decision on whether or not to cancel events. Ox Cart Days chair Jess Bengtson says the committee has had conversations with the city, with entertainers and vendors, and stakeholders to try to make the best choice, but also keep the public’s safety in mind.

    They currently have plans for a 7-day festival August 17-23, 2020 with over 60 events for people of all ages at various locations throughout Crookston. Events include a two-day craft and vendor fair, circus-themed street entertainment, beer tasting with multiple area breweries, and street dance with tribute rock band “Snake Oil.”

    “We’ve had our website up with the preliminary schedule since late fall and have strategically announced new events,” Bengtson explained. “We’ve been excited about Ox Cart Days 2020 since the day after last year’s festival and are going to hold out until around mid-June before we make a decision either way. We also have to follow what the state does and be mindful of suggestions and recommendations from other event organizers in the area.”

    The Little Miss and Junior Miss Crookston pageants announced on Facebook Tuesday that they’re not accepting applications from contestants just yet, but they have not cancelled their event.

    “With the uncertainty of what may transpire over the next few weeks or month, we continue to consider options which may allow for us to have the possibility of opening up applications later this month,” the pageant committee stated. “We are not ready to cancel the 2020 pageant season yet, as many of our contestants wait all year long for the opportunity to participate but we will only move forward in a safe and responsible manner.”

    More information about Ox Cart Days can be found online at www.crookstonoxcartdays.com. To contact Ox Cart Days, email crookstonoxcartdays@gmail.com, send them a message on social media or call / text (701) 610-6454.