By RYAN JARVI
Ironwood - The Honor Guard from the American Legion Post 5 presented a short opening ceremony for Festival Ironwood on Thursday at Depot Park.
Bob Cannon, a member of the Legion, offered the blessing for the event and sang the "Star Spangled Banner."
The Pledge of Allegiance was also recited and a brief statement was heard from the festival's co-organizer, Will Corcoran.
"There's a lot people that do a lot to put this thing on," Corcoran told the crowd. "I have big signs hanging on the back end of the tent. Patronize them, and if you see any of them, thank them. There's so many I can't even begin to mention all of the people that have helped us."
The opening ceremony also included a moment of silence for Brian Lindquist, who died unexpectedly on Tuesday.
Lindquist was an important part of Festival Ironwood and contributed much of his time helping with the event, officials said.
Thursday's festival events included polka music, a teen dance and the kickoff of the "World's Largest Duck Pick," featuring 2,500 little rubber ducks. Each duck has a number that allows participants to win various prizes. Festival organizers said there was $5,000 in donated prizes for the game, including 14 bicycles.
Festival Ironwood will continue today with more events beginning at 10 a.m. and lasting throughout the day, with the majority of them taking place at Depot Park.