Community Event Information


Winter Festival at the Rec

Fun, family event to be held at the Rec on February 12th from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm! There will be Dog Sled Rides, Horse-drawn Sleigh Rides, Skating, Sledding, Snowpainting, Turkey Bowling, Kids Crafts and more!!! Join us for an afternoon of winter fun for the whole family! Hot beverages and snacks will be provided!


Fall Festival & Costume Party!

Fun, free, family event with games, prizes, treats and Cook County Connection animal friends. The event will be held outside in a safe manner to ensure fun for all! Pumpkins for the first 75 kids!


4 PM – 6 PM

Side Lake Rec Pavilion – 7548 Highway 5

The event is generously sponsored by French Township, AMVET Local 12, local businesses and supported by community volunteers! To volunteer, donate, or for any questions, call Talia 218-969-7673 or Julie 218-969-4785 or send a PM on Facebook. For more information, visit our event page on Facebook at


Celebrate Side Lake!

Come and join us for a fun, family-friendly event at the Side Lake Rec Center on August 19th from 4pm – 7pm! There will be entertainment for young and old, including a petting zoo and balloon animals for the kiddos, fun and games for kids and adults, and food trucks! There will also be many prizes to win, vendors with local business info, and live music! Hope to see you there! For more info, click here.


Side Lake Flotilla

The Side Lake Flotilla is happening again this year (weather permitting) on Saturday the 3rd of July! If cancelled due to rain, they will reschedule for the 4th. The line-up will start in front of Bimbo’s on Side Lake at 10:30 – 11:00 am. There will be prizes for the most creative and decorated “floats”, and there will be live music following the flotilla at the red cabin to the left of McCarthy Beach. Should be a fun event for all!

If you would like more details and the flotilla route map, you can click the link below for more information.


Iron Range Renewal Night

Iron Range Renewal Night is scheduled to be held at the Side Lake Rec Center Pavilion on July 4th! The last Renewal Night was held at the Minnesota Discovery Center on June 13th, and there were over 500 attendees! This event is FREE to the public and will begin at 4pm. Food will be provided at 5pm including a hog roast, burgers, brats, and much more! There will also be live music and a bounce house for the kiddos! For more information, you can go to the Iron Range Renewal Facebook page or contact NorthStar Church in Hibbing at


Side Lake Rec Program

Due to lack of volunteers, the Side Lake Rec Program will not be held for the Sumer of 2021. We could use your help! If you would like to see this program continue next year and would be willing to volunteer, you can contact Gene Capitani at 218-254-7466.

The budgeted funds designated to the Rec Program for 2020 were reallocated to updating the playground equipment at the Rec. We are hopeful to have the new equipment installed this summer! We will be posting updates as soon as the playground installation begins!


Firecracker 5K & Side Lake 4th of July Parade 2021

Despite the governor’s recent announcement, the Side Lake Parade and Firecracker 5K committees have made the tough decision to cancel these events for the second year in a row.  While pre-planning, Covid policies and procedures played an initial decision, but lack of volunteers is what the events ultimately face as an ongoing issue. 

According to Alyssa Jerulle, Committee Chair, the organization that is used for the 5K is open to scheduled races; however, due to the rules that were outlined by the MN Department of Health being quite extensive surrounding 5K’s “it is not in the committee’s best interest to proceed with the event.”  Jerulle goes on to say, “While our committee would love for this event to happen this year, it’s just something we are not equipped to handle.” Jerulle went on to state, “We are in need of volunteers to put on the Fourth of July events in Side Lake. As past Committee Chair, Marie Erickson agreed, “There is a lot up-front planning with law enforcement, permits, safety plans, fundraising, clean-up etc.” While the committee has been able to make-do the past couple years, in order to continue on an additional 25-30 volunteers will be needed.  

Similarly, the MN Department of Health’s rules regarding parades played an integral role in the decision to cancel the parade. Jerulle stated, “Despite the Governors plans to open, if he decides to shut it down again prior to the Fourth of July events, we are not able to adhere to the guidelines we have discussed.” The guidelines discussed, stated in the Guidance for Vehicle Gatherings, Parades, and Drive- 

Ins, “If attendees remain in their vehicles (aside from restroom use) for the entire gathering, capacity of vehicle gathering is not limited….. If attendees are otherwise allowed to leave their vehicles, the event must adhere to the STAY SAFE GUIDANCE FOR ENTERTAINMENT AND MEETING VENUES, including capacity limitations… Social distancing must be maintained between members of different households when riding in a vehicle. Consistent with the restrictions on social gatherings described… If vehicle windows are open and within 6 feet of another vehicle with open windows, masks must be worn by the people in the vehicle. Organizers should consider what accommodations can be made to ensure equitable participation (e.g. people without access to a vehicle).” 

The Parade Committee plans to meet to discuss the following year’s plan.  “Our hope is to come back stronger in 2022.  We are exploring adding additional events to the Side Lake Fourth of July events,” said Hannah Forti, Committee Chair.  Jerulle added, “We have a creative group of people on this committee and I’m excited to see what we will be able to do next year!  We would also like to thank all the businesses that support our parade with generous donations.  Just as they have supported us, it’s our turn to support them during this time now that we are able to!  Our committee cannot guarantee a shut down will not occur again, but what we do know for sure is that we wouldn’t be able to have the events given the guidance we were required to follow before due to the lack of time and volunteers needed to do it.” 

Last year’s 4th of July Boat Parade may enjoy round two in 2021! We saw almost 90 boats on the Side Lake chain and over 27 boats on Perch Lake participate on a beautiful 88 degree day!  This event wasn’t sanctioned by the French Township, but the enthusiasm wasn’t lost upon them.  It shows how this community can really come together no matter the circumstance! 

All who are able volunteer for next year’s Fourth of July events, please email