KINGSFORD, Mich. (WJMN) – 2023 is a big year for Kingsford. A celebration will be held about a year from now, August 3, 4 and 5, 2023, but preparations are already underway.
“A lot of the same people that were involved 25 years ago planning the 75-year diamond jubilee are again involved putting on this centennial,” said John Jessen, Vice President/Event Coordinator, Kingsford Centennial Committee. “There is a tremendous amount of work and time to get it organized properly. We have a large committee that has been actually working for a year already for an event that’s still a year out. Getting all the details organized. So, we have a board of directors, five members and then a committee of about 30 active members that meet once a month right now. As we get closer to the event, we’ll be meeting more regularly.”
It’s a big committee putting this together, made up of people who are passionate about celebrating their community.
“A lot of history that people want to be involved in,” said Jessen. “It’s a big celebration. A lot of entertainment and that’s the part that I’m mainly involved in. Over the course of that three-day period, August 3, 4 and 5 we’re going to have headliners, national acts each day, plus local and regional acts, two stages. We’re planning on bringing in a gigantic tent, that the stage will be in the tent. So if inclement weather happens, we’ll be protected. The show will go on. We’ve actually signed our first headliner, which for this early is kind of remarkable. We’ve signed a contract with Big & Rich.”
It’s not just for the locals, people are and near are expected to attend the centennial celebration.
“We expect a lot of former residents of our area to come home for that weekend,” said Jessen. “There will be a lot of class reunions going on. We’ll have separate areas for the classes that want to have a reunion as part of our event. Again, going back to Ford Motor Company, we’re hoping they come on as a major sponsor. We’re working with them right now.”
There are different ways you can be involved. Right now, Jessen says the biggest thing they need help with are sponsorships.
“Part of keeping those ticket prices as low as they are for the entertainment that we’re going to have is getting businesses to pitch in and we’ve got several businesses that have committed to major sponsorships,” said Jessen. “We’ve got a few more as our committee members are actively going out and talking to those businesses right now.”
And it’s never too early to celebrate.
“We are actually going to be having a booth at the Dickinson County Fair which happens over the Labor Day weekend,” said Jessen. “We’ve got some merchandise printed up already that we’ll be selling at the fair. We’re taking orders for items that we’ll have available. We’re going to have advanced early bird tickets for the three- day festival going on sale in early December at a really great price. It will be half of what the regular price of what the three-day advance ticket will be. So $30 special for early birds for three-day ticket.”
Kingsford’s Centennial Celebration will be August 3, 4 and 5, 2023 at Lodal Park. For more information to plan your weekend or to lean more on how you can be involved, click here.