Itâ€™s the ultimate game of Finders Keepers, during this weekendâ€™s 42nd annual Agate Days in Moose Lake. The cannon for the annual agate stampede will sound at 2 p.m. Hidden in four tons of gravel, some 350 pounds of agates also can be found spread over Moose Lakeâ€™s Elm Street, hidden along with 1,200 quarters.
Veterans of the stampede say a first-timer might want to wear a helmet; it is a â€œstampede,â€ after all. Other recommended stampede gear includes a bag (for your goodies) and a spray bottle filled with water, which makes it easier to see if any sparkle can be found under dirt-encrusted rocks.
In spite of probably losing one of its venues â€“ Moose Lake State Park, which is closed pending a resolution of the state budget â€“ this weekendâ€™s Moose Lakeâ€™s Agate Days event looks as promising as ever.
While most of the events set for Saturday and Sunday revolve around Minnesotaâ€™s official state gemstone, not all of them do. There will be food for purchase, art in the park, an antique car show and, of course, a two-day gem and mineral show, in addition to the centerpiece event, the agate stampede.
A schedule of events follows:
Saturday, July 16
Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast from 7:30-11:30 a.m. at Moose Lake City Park Pavilion
Gem and Mineral Show 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Moose Lake High School
Art in the Park Gem and Mineral Show from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Moose Lake City Park
Agate and gem slide presentation from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Moose Lake Community Center
Clark-Olsen Agate Stampede at 2 p.m. on Elm Avenue
Firemenâ€™s Steak Fry at 4 p.m. until gone at the Moose Lake Fire Hall
Sunday, July 17
Gem and Mineral Show from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Moose Lake High School
Antique Car Show from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Moose Lake City Park
Note: If the state budget impasse is resolved, there will be an open house at the agate and geological interpretive center at Moose Lake State Park both days.