It was a sunny, warm and busy weekend for Schooner Days, the annual three-day festival organized by the Eden Prairie Lions Club.
This year’s event, held June 2-4 at Round Lake Park, drew more than 12,000 visitors who came to enjoy carnival rides, children’s games, bingo, a beer garden, music, and a new addition: a vendor marketplace featuring specialty foods, juried arts and crafts, and hand-picked retailers.
Nancy Vest and her husband, Terry Eggan, the president of the Lions Club, played a role in marketing this year’s festival. They attributed the increase in attendance to various factors, including the introduction of the marketplace, the successful launch of the Schooner Days website, a dedicated marketing campaign, and the support of numerous Lions Club members and community volunteers.
The Lioness-Lions members sat at the entrance in the heat to ensure an accurate count of attendees, using clickers to welcome and count each person.
“To put this in perspective, we usually estimate around 3,000 visitors,” said Vest. “Lions volunteers had to send out for more beer at least two times that I know of, as well as other supplies, due to the higher number of people attending. We are all tired but very happy today.”
The Lions Club, known for its philanthropic endeavors, donates all proceeds from Schooner Days (its biggest fundraising event of the year) to various charitable causes, including the Minnesota Lions Gift of Sight Eye Bank, Minnesota Lions Hearing Foundation, Can Do Canines, and True Friends Camp Eden Wood.
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