Port Clinton will be waking up next week to an explosion of fun and games, parades and music, and a cornucopia of good food. It will all be waiting at Waterworks Park for the 40th annual Main Street Port Clinton Walleye Festival.
The five-day celebration opens next Thursday at 5 p.m. and is one the city deserves, after Covid-19 mandated one of the toughest years on record. But Port Clinton is also a town that knows how to throw a great party. The Walleye Festival also marks the launch of the Memorial Holiday Weekend and the summer season, and it should be a dandy.
Few things say holiday and Port Clinton like a hearty parade, and two are on the agenda. Outgoing Police Chief Rob Hickman is Grand Marshall of the Eagles Grande Parade on Saturday, May 29 at 1 p.m. Memorial Day will have its own parade at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 31.
Use your imagination and decorate the Family Truckster for the parade, as if you were heading to Walley World.
Kids and fishing in the Walleye Capital of the World go together well. Hardy farm-raised channel catfish will have to fill in, though, when Skipper Bud’s Kids Fishing Derby takes over Derby Pond at Waterworks Park on Sunday, May 30 at 11:30 a.m. There will be free worms and prizes for the big catfish.
Durant Amusement’s popular carnival rides will kick off on opening day, Thursday, May 27, at 5 p.m. The fun rides will also hang around after the Walleye Festival is over, offering rides on Thursday through Sunday, June 3-6. Rides open those days at 5 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and noon on the weekend.
There is a long list of bands providing live music at the Walleye Festival this year. The shady Entertainment Tent is free, and cold beverages are available.
Here is the lineup:
Thursday, May 27: Rumours, 7 p.m.
Friday, May 28: Reckless Highway, 5 p.m.; The Eric Sowers Band, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 29: Jai Merina, noon; BarCode, 3 p.m.; Josh Logan Band, 7 p.m.
Sunday, May 30: Jamey Hensley, noon; JK Razz, 3 p.m.; The jUnK!, 7 p.m.
Monday, May 31: Johnny O Project, 11 a.m.; The Island Song Trio, 2:30 p.m.