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      Crane Watch Committee Has Announced Festival Dates

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      The Crane Watch Festivalcommittee has announced the dates for this year's annual Crane WatchFestival. The festival will run from Friday, March 22 through Sunday,March 31.

      The festival will include 10 daysof fun-filled education, family activities, entertainment and community wideevents taking place in Kearney, Minden and Gibbon.

      The festival "Lift-OffLuncheon" will be held on Friday, March 22 with guest speaker, Thomas DMangelsen. Mr Mangelsen is a world-renowned wildlife photographer and nativeNebraskan. Theluncheon will be held at the Younes Conference Center. Reservations for thisevent can be made by calling the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce.

      Two new events for this year are the Crane Cake DecoratingContest and a sanctioned BBQ Contest. The Crane Cake decorating contestis hosted by the Colonels and Envoys of the Kearney Area Chamber ofCommerce. Teams of up to four will be provided sheet cakes and willcreate a crane cake with edible decorations. Prizes will be awarded at areception on Friday, March 22 at the Younes Conference Center. Proceedsfrom the event will go to funding an intern scholarship at RoweSanctuary. Teams will need to register prior to March 1st.

      The Chamber is also sponsoringa Kansas City BBQ Society sanctioned BBQ contest. Contestants will becompeting for over $4000 in prizes. The event will be held at the Buffalo CountyFairgrounds, and the public is invited to come out on Saturday, March 23.Judging will begin after noon, other activities will include a "backyardBBQ" amateur division, vendor booths and a beer garden.

      Additional information on theseevents, and the entire listing of festival activities can be found at, www.cranewatchfestival.com.To register for the Crane Cake Decorating contest or the BBQ contest, pleasecall the Kearney Area Chamber of Commerce, 308-237-3101.

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