If you ask me, Havre’s annual Festival Days is about one of the single-best traditions we have going, and that’s saying a lot because there’s plenty of great traditions in what I’m proud to call my hometown.
There is so much to see, do and take in during Festival Days, it’s probably hard for most people to get it all in.
But I’m hoping, you, like me, are going to try and do as much as possible this weekend, and that includes getting out and supporting our local sports teams.
Make no mistake, Havre always has great support for our sports teams, both high school and college. But when it’s Festival Days, it’s like things are even more amped for the teams playing in town that weekend, and those teams certainly need your support.
Of course, the big one is football, and this year it’s the Havre Blue Ponies’ turn to play on Festival Days’ weekend. The Ponies are gunning for their first win of the season on Friday night when they host the arch rival Sidney Eagles, and a big crowd would certainly make a difference.
Plus, this is Havre’s first game of what I consider the fall. The Ponies played Butte Central back in August, but Friday night’s game against the Eagles is really more like what high school football season should be all about, and it will be a unique setting in Havre.
Nowhere else will you find a high school football game being played inside a unique stadium like ours, with the sun going down and with the added excitement of one of the most prideful weekend’s Havre has.
Now, of course, sports fans are going to have to make some decisions too.
Because on Friday night, the MSU-Northern volleyball team is also at home to play Rocky Mountain College. If you didn’t make it to last Saturday’s historic match against Carroll, you need to see the Skylight splay Rocky, or Dickinson State on Saturday night.
Simply put, the Skylights are very good. They have talent and power and they play with enthusiasm and excitement.
Going to a Skylight volleyball game this weekend will also give fans a chance to spend some time in the currently-being-remodeled Armory Gymnasium. This week, another set of bleachers was constructed, which will only enhance to the already awesome home-court advantage being built inside the grand old Armory.
But if volleyball or football isn’t your thing, don’t fret because there’s plenty of horsepower set to take place during Festival Days.
Friday-Sunday marks the only time during a calendar year that the MSU-Northern rodeo team performs at home. The annual Northern Rodeo, which will take place with three performances at the Great Northern Fairgrounds Arena, is one of the most well-attended rodeos on the Big Sky Region circuit, and it’s a great chance to get out and see what the Lights and Skylights are all about.
Northern has some great rodeo athletes, and the rodeo is always a great show during Festival Days weekend, so here’s hoping some of you can make it up to the fairgrounds for that too.
There’s also the E-1 Towing Demolition Derby on Sunday night, which is one last chance for demo fans to pack the arena stands until next summer.
Of course, some athletes will be busy this weekend, especially at the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field as the annual 48 Hours of Softball takes place.
Just like Festival Days is unique in itself, so too is the 48-hour tourney. If you like to watch softball, there’s few other places you can crawl out of bed and go watch a game at 3:30 in the morning on a beautiful September night. But you can in Havre and I encourage everyone to try and get down to the softball field, if you’re not one of the ones who’s playing in the games.
Sure, there are great sporting events on every weekend in the fall in Havre, but because it’s Festival Days, it makes it that much more special.
So if you can, get out and do as much as possible. Get to Blue Pony Stadium and the Armory and the Sixth Avenue Memorial Field and show off that great Havre Pride this weekend.
Festival Days only comes around once a year and lets all help to make this one as special, fun and unique as all the others.