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East End brings on the family fun

Signs in Superior Friday point the way to East End's annual rummage sales and Family Fun Day activities, which take place Saturday. (Maria Lockwood/

Whether this marks year 15 or 16, the title of Superior's longest-running neighborhood party goes to East End Family Fun Day. Despite the influx of new events in the city — South End Days and the rebooted Billings Park Days — the East End Family Fun Day takes the prize.

"They're going strong," said Craig Sutherland, 8th District city councilor and one of the organizers of Billings Park Days.

Everyone is invited to join in the fun Saturday. Whether folks are looking for rummage sale deals, live music, games for the kids or a chance to show off their pet, they'll find it in the city's east end.

The annual garage sales alone stretch for miles and bring a few thousand people to the area, said dentist Jon Nelson with East End Dental Arts.

"If you're going to walk along the rummage sale tour, hopefully you'll end up in our neck of the woods," he said.

There they'll be greeted with a roster of family-friendly events, including a car show starting at 10 a.m. and pet parade at noon. The vacant lot at the intersection of East Fifth Street and 22nd Avenue East will host bubble stations, games, chalk drawing and bouncy houses for the kids.

"We're tying it all together, showcasing our area," Nelson said. "It's the original Superior."

Sutherland said he's a fan of these neighborhood get-togethers.

"It's not a competition," he said, although the city councilor has a mock rivalry going on with South End Days organizer, Kalee Hermanson. "It would be nice to see all these events with the other events as co-sponsors, getting the whole city together."

Each event has its own emphasis and special features, from baseball games to fireworks.

"Nobody's trying to one-up the others, we're just doing social events," Nelson said. "There are different things in each one, and that brings people to see these different areas. That's a positive thing for Superior overall."

Sutherland challenged residents to organize a North End Days event next year.

"Whoever wants to step up, let's do it," he said.

When the East End Business Group launched the neighborhood event, Nelson said, it featured a fire muster and centered on the Old Firehouse and Police Museum. Over the years, it has changed and condensed into one day of family-friendly activities. Whether it's the 15th or 16th anniversary is open to interpretation, Nelson said, because of one year where they canceled the organized events due to street construction.

The annual shindig has been offering the same family fun for years, but the lineup may get some tweaks in 2018. A fresh batch of people showed up at the last organizational meeting for East End Family Fun Day, Nelson said.

"It's amazing how excited they were about Superior," he said.

They brought enthusiasm, energy and new ideas that may be incorporated into next year's event.

"There might be some changes, but only changes for the good," Nelson said.

More information on East End Family Fun Day, including a list of rummage sales, can be found on Facebook.

Registration for the car show takes place from 9:30-10 a.m. Saturday at the main tent at the intersection of East Fifth Street and 22nd Avenue East. Cost is $5. For information, call Nelson at (715) 398-3239.

Registration for the pet parade will take place shortly before noon at the main tent. Costumes are encouraged.