North Fest Passage

It's hot out. Thank God New Times is around to break stories like this that other Valley media outlets won't touch, but we aren't content just to bellyache -- we offer solutions. Like, uh . . . you could get out of town. If you need some pretext for heading north for the weekend, consider checking out the 15th annual Flagstaff SummerFest.

The three-day event, which features entertainment, a juried art exhibition, hands-on arts and crafts activities and more, is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, August 6; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, August 7; and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, August 8, at Coconino County Fairgrounds (a.k.a. Fort Tuthill County Park), located three miles south of Flag at I-17 exit 337. Admission is $5, free for kids 12 and under.

More than 100 artists and craftspersons from all over the U.S. -- New York to Arkansas, Oregon to Texas to California and throughout the Southwest -- will display (and sell) their wares. There are also three entertainment stages on which such diverse regional music faves as Ricky Ray, Bright Angel, The Milt Cannon Quartet, Miss Gypsy Blue and the Gypsy Blues Band, The Stickman, The Rambling Rovers, The Jug Band, Azz Izz, Michelle Branch, Flagstaff Ballroom Dancers, and the Walt Richardson Band are slated to perform. The third stage emphasizes kid-friendly acts such as singer/songwriter Lynn Lynton and magician Sean Greer.

And of course, there will be no shortage of kettle korn, fry bread and other such wonderfully bad-for-you edible goodies.

This is also the weekend for Eagar Daze. The 14th annual event, centered on Ramsey Park in the White Mountains-area town, includes logging competitions, softball and volleyball tourneys, an ice-cream social, a watermelon-eating contest, a sack race, a three-legged race, a spoon race, an egg toss, a barbecue and many other such Andy Hardy-esque diversions. Most promising by far is an event listed as the "Incredibly Interesting Dog Show."

Festivities are scheduled from 6 to 11:30 p.m. Friday, August 6; and from 6 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Saturday, August 7. Each evening wraps up with an old-fashioned street dance in front of Eagar Town Hall, Second Street and Main. Friday night's dance is to the music of Southern Highway; Saturday night's is to the Jadi Norris Overdrive Band. -- M.V. Moorhead

For details on Flagstaff SummerFest, call 1-888-278-3378. For details on Eagar Daze, call 1-520-333-1639.

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