Summer Fest is a real enjoyable way to spend a summer Sunday with family and friends! If you have never been to the AELC before, Summer Fest is a real good time to come and see what the AELC has to offer! 

What is "Summer Fest"?

Summer Fest is a public event which is usually held from noon to 5 p.m. on the second or third Sunday in August.  (In previous years it was held in June, but with the earlier schedule of the Polk County Fair and other conflicting events, it has been moved to August.)  The event is free to members and the admission fee for non-members is a suggested donation of $1 per person.


What kinds of activities are planned during Summer Fest?

The day starts with a free lunch for all visitors and includes grilled hot dogs, chips and root beer.  Dinner is served and eaten to the accompaniment of music outside.  All through the afternoon nature crafts, puzzles and games are available for children of all ages.  Coffee and cookies are also served in the afternoon.

Through the course of the afternoon three or four presentations are given.  In past years our visitors have really enjoyed the following topics:

  • The Wacky Professor Jerry Wenzel who performs “science magic”
  • Bird Photography by local writer and entertainer Eric Bergeson
  • Connecting Children to Nature by Steve Manuum
  • The Reintroduction of Trumpeter Swans to Minnesota by Earl Johnson
  • Prairie Wildflowers by Ross Hier
  • Hunting Dog Training and Techniques by Matt Forgit
  • Black Bears by Earl Johnson
  • The Animal Menagerie from the Headwaters Science Center