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Local companies and volunteers gather to make a day of free family fun in Wilsonville

SPOKESMAN FILE PHOTO - Fun in the Park continues to offer plenty of good fun, tasty treats, a chance to shine -- all in a single place.  Wilsonville's Fun in the Park event will be returning to Town Center Park this year and will no doubt be six hours of fun activities and performances for community members to enjoy as it has been each year.

The festival, which is entering its 17th year, is expected to attract upwards of 10,000 visitors. A celebration of community and collaboration, the festival includes arts and crafts, a petting zoo, body art, inflatable play areas, performers and a variety of other shows and activities.

Bob Woodle has been involved in the event since its first year. The event stemmed from the Boones Ferry Days, he said. When the original festival began to lose attendees, a group of locals decided to come up with something new. In its first year the new festival was a week-long event. Afterwards, Woodle said, "the committee that put it together played on the reaction of the community and played on 'fun' and came up with Fun in the Park." Though the event is based off of the same formula each year, it changes slightly from year to year to stay fresh and exciting. Woodle said, "It has been one of our goals at the beginning of each year to have a 25 percent difference, with different inflatables, venues of fun, and highlights."

This year the festival is run by a new president, Brady Mordhorst, who emphasized the inclusive nature of the event.

"There is absolutely no exclusion of anyone who wants to come and have a free fun time," Nirdgirst said. There are no age limits or requirements. There is no fee. You don't have to speak English. Anyone can come." Mordhorst added, "We did a new contest called Design the Fun. We asked for kids in the Wilsonville area to pretend that they are designing the Fun in the Park T-shirt. We selected our favorite four and uploaded those to Instagram and Facebook. Whichever got most votes or likes won." T-shirts featuring winning designs will be given away at the park for free.

If you go

WHAT: Fun in the Park

WHEN: Saturday, Aug. 5, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

WHERE: Town Center Park, Wilsonville

Another new aspect of this year's festival includes the variety

of animals at the festival. If furry friends are what you're looking for, Events Unlimited will be bringing a variety of friendly critters including sheep, goats and even bunnies. First Responders will give a K-9 demonstration and Brett Wilson, also known as Mr. Lizard, will be entertaining reptile lovers with his seven-foot python — Armani, tarantula, tortoise and other slithering and crawling reptiles.

For those looking to the main stage for fun and entertainment, this year's lineup includes student performances from Lee's Martial Arts Academy and Innovative Dance, other dance performances and an upbeat workout lead by Edge Family Fitness.

The day of fun is made possible by the involvement of more than 700 volunteers and remains free to all. The festival relies on the support of sponsors; this year's premier sponsors include Fred Meyer, Elite Realty Group, and Polygon Northwest.

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