Sawdust Days Festival kicks off this weekend - WNEM TV 5

Sawdust Days Festival kicks off this weekend

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HEMLOCK, MI (WNEM) -

Fall is almost upon us and one community is celebrating its roots.

"It's something that's been going on for many years and it's tradition. People would be upset if it didn't happen," said Katie Ellison, committee member for Hemlock Sawdust Days Festival.

It's a long standing celebration focused on the town's lumber history.

Ellison said it's a great way to celebrate the past.

"We try to make it bigger and better every year, but also try to remember that lumbering heritage. So this year for instance, we've got the Great Lakes Lumber Show. They'll be doing various lumberjack stunts and wood-carving. And also the Sawdust Days Penny Hunt, which is a big pile of sawdust and the kids go crazy looking for pennies in it," Ellison said.

The penny hunt was an original activity when the festival first started in 1978.

The Maple Grille will grill food and brew beer for the festival.

"We felt this was a good year to finally jump in and participate and it just made sense now that we're doing out wood-fired craft beer. And we're able to finally ramp up our production just enough that we think we can provide all the beer for the event," Owner Josh Schaeding said.

The festival takes place at the Richland Township Park from Friday through Sunday.

TV5's David Custer will judge the beard competition on Saturday.

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