Celebration History

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This festival is an annual heritage event which began in 1948 as the “Fall Festival” with Saturday’s theme being “Jesse James Day”.  It is held the weekend after Labor Day and is among the largest outdoor celebrations in Minnesota and is organized and managed by a true all-volunteer organization. Thousands of visitors witness reenactments of the robbery, which is staged on Division street, outside of the First National Bank of Northfield. Other activities during the festival include: a championship rodeo, carnival, car show, and parade, horseshoe hunt, as well as arts and crafts expositions, and musical performances. Many food stations are set up in Bridge Square, and during the evenings live music is played in a “Entertainment Center” on Water Street.

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