Fall Things To Do As We Countdown To Halloween Day 185

Wizard of Oz Festivals – Follow The Yellow Brick Road

This is the 75th anniversary of the MGM movie release in 1939.  There are a number of Wizard of Oz Festivals to mark this beloved movie classic.  Also this would have been Judy Garland’s 92nd birthday on June 10th.  There may be more festivals but I am aware of these.
Video: Wizard of Oz Yellow Brick Road Song From the Movie

Village of Orland Park Hosts Wizard of Oz Festival in September.
Inaugural Midwest Wizard of Oz Festival comes to Centennial Park in Orland Park, Illinois.  David De John is the organizer for this festival in the Chicago suburb and hopes to make this the largest attend Oz festival in the country..  Festival dates are September 19-21, 2014.  This marks the 75th anniversary for this classic MGM movie released in 1939.  Activities will include a Dorothy Gale themed petting zoo, pony rides, merchandise vendors, tethered hot air balloon rides, carnival rides, and games for the whole family.  Event includes the national contests with singing, writing, and coloring winners.  Expect to see some scarecrows, cowardly lions, tin men, and even a great and powerful Oz or two in the crowd.  Sounds like a unique and fun event.

Endorsing the event is Ted Bulthaup, owner of the Hollywood Palms Movie Theater and the person responsible for getting the Munchkins their Hollywood Walk of Fame star.  Others endorsing the event are Adam Woodworth the Executive Director of the Children’s Museum in Oak Lawn, and Karen Owens from Storyland Collectables and the International Wizard of Oz Club.  John Fricke will be the Master of Ceremonies.  He is perhaps the preeminent Wizard of Oz and Judy Garland historian.  The original book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was written by L. Frank Baum.  His great-grandson Roger S. Baum will attend the Midwest festival.

Oztoberfest Returns To Wamego Kansas in 2014.
There is no place like home as Oztoberfest comes back for its 10th year in September.  Usually the last weekend in September but dates for 2014 have not yet been released.  Annual event features live music on stage, a theater production, autograph signing, costumed characters, and various contests for kids and adults.

More Wizard of Oz Festivals for 2014 (summer festivals).  I am including some events outside of September and October simply because these are such wonderful tributes to an American classic film.

Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids Minnesota Hosts Wizard of Oz Festival
On June 12-15, the Judy Garland Museum will host the Wizard of Oz Festival as a 75th anniversary celebration.  Also memorable is their birthday party for Judy Garland on June 10th.  It celebrates what would have been her 92nd birthday.  Festival includes costumed characters, various breakfast awards, carriage rides, a Munchkin baby shower, an Oz dinner and Film event, and a Toto dog talent contest.

Oz-Stravaganza Returns For 36th Wizard of Oz Festival.
The community of Chittenango, a Syracuse-New York suburb, continues with their 36th annual Wizard of Oz Festival called Oz Fest on June 6-8, 2014.  They expect to have 20,000 visitors and perhaps will set a world record for the most number of costumed fans in one place for a Wizard of Oz event.  The current record is 446 people.  Annual activities include hot air balloon ride, pancake breakfast, carnival rides, costume contest, evening dinner, and local entertainment.  There is also a golf tournament going on during the festival.  The author L. Frank Baum was born in Chittenango.

Ionia, Michigan Supports Wizard of Oz Festival June 20-21, 2014.
Events include lunch at McDonald’s with Wizard of Oz characters.  The movie plays at the Ionia Theater both days.  A music concert happens on Friday.  Saturday has a run/walk, arts and crafts exhibits, a Dorothy and Glinda look-a-like contests, a local soap box derby event, lunch at Pizza Hut and a raffle drawing.

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