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Kensington beats the heat with four days of fun during annual Rune Stone Days

Kensington kicked off 2022 Rune Stone Days with events that began on Thursday, June 16 and went through Sunday, June 19.

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Leland Dahlvang, left, and Phillip Schlapkohl collect candy during the 2022 Rune Stone Days parade.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press
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KENSINGTON — Despite the wilting heat causing low participants for Sunday's tractor pull, fun flourished in the community of Kensington during the annual Rune Stone Days.

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Kensington Rune Stone Days parade-goers watch as the Alexandria Shriners perform a choreographed four-wheeler performance.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press

The four-day celebration went from June 16 to 19 and included a pageant, garage sales, street dances, fireworks, gem "mining," sporting tournaments, vendors, a tractor pull and parade and more.

The events began on Thursday, June 16, with the Little Miss Rune Stone and Miss Rune Stone Pageant, which crowned Ezoza Ziyodullaeva as queen, Hailey Roers as first princess and Penelope Gardner as the second princess.

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Miss Rune Stone Queen Ezoza Ziyodullaeva, left, First Princess Hailey Roers, middle, and Second Princess Penelope Gardner wave to parade-goers during the 2022 Rune Stone Days Parade on Sunday, June 19.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press

The festival took a full swing on Friday with city-wide garage sales, ax throwing and a night of family fun.

Saturday featured a pancake feed hosted by the Kensington Lions, a craft and vendor show, a co-ed softball tournament and a golf and bean bag tournament, a 'kid zone' with birdhouse building, a petting zoo, "gem mining," a pedal pull and more.

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Children dash for candy on Central Avenue in Kensington during the 2022 Rune Stone Days parade.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press

The fun days concluded on Sunday with a classic car show, a Father's Day lunch, the antique tractor pull and a parade.

Because of temperatures reaching the high 90s on Sunday, one of the organizers of the tractor pull, Joyce Hausmann, said that even with high heat and low participation numbers, the event went well.

"This year, there were 67 pulls. Last year there were 91," said Hausmann. "Some farmers were probably in the fields taking care of hay. Some may not have come because of the gas prices."

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Austin Mattson competed in two weight classes — 5,500 and the 6,000 — in the Rune Stone Days tractor pull with his 1965 Oliver 770 tractor.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press

Hausmann said the tractor pull, which began around 11:30 a.m., did not finish until 3:50 p.m. Most years, it goes until 6 or 7 p.m.

"We're glad we quit when we did," said Hausmann. "The heat was getting to us."

Temperatures reached nearly 100 degrees on Sunday.

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Cole Becker of Kensington readies his International Harvester Super-C for the 3,500-pound pull.
Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press

Rune Stone Days ended with a Kensington Norseman baseball game that led the home team to lose 8 - 4 against Carlos. With the wind as a factor, Norseman player Trent Koloski said they were "hitting the crap out of the ball."

Thalen Zimmerman of Alexandria joined the Echo Press team as a full-time reporter in Aug. 2021, after graduating from Bemidji State University with a bachelor of science degree in mass communication in May of 2021.
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