Lake Mills will host annual July Jubilee

Published 8:53 pm Wednesday, July 10, 2019

LAKE MILLS — July Jubilee organizers in Lake Mills are hoping to make the festival bigger than ever this year in celebration of the city’s sesquicentennial year.

Cassie Johnson, executive director of the Lake Mills Chamber Development Corporation, said people can expect many of the same festivities as in years past — but they should expect those events to be elevated to make them even more fun. 

“We encourage people to come celebrate Lake Mills with us,” Johnson said. “See what we have to offer, and enjoy the weekend with family and friends.”

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Organizers have met to plan the festivities since last summer and have conducted several fundraisers since, including trivia nights at 5 Alarm Brewing Co. in Lake Mills and selling merchandise.

Events kick off Thursday with a bridal show through the decades and a showing of “The Greatest Showman” at Oakwood Park.

On Friday, highlights include a barbecue lunch at MBT Bank at 11 a.m., a wine tasting at 1901 Victorian House & Gardens hosted by the Lake Mills Area Historical Society at 5 p.m. and the Little Mr. and Ms. Lake Mills Contest.

For the contest, goodies will be given to all entries, and two randomly drawn winners from a combined four different age groups will be named Little Mr. and Ms. Lake Mills 2019 and will be invited to ride in the July Jubilee Parade Saturday.

The contest begins at 6:30 p.m., and entrants are asked to check in at the main stage at 6:15 p.m.

Additional entertainment will be provided by The Mills Theater, which will highlight locally filmed movies throughout the weekend. The first of the free showings will be “Homeland” at noon Saturday.

After a successful July Jubilee Community Night last year, the community night is coming back this year again at 6 p.m. with family-fun inflatable games, a Ferris wheel, children’s activities, live music, food and fun.

Fireworks will be at dusk, fired from the city lagoons, and the Mill Street Band will perform at 10 p.m.

On Saturday, get some exercise first thing in the morning with the July Jubilee 5k at 7 a.m., followed by the parade at 10:30 a.m. New this year, Johnson said there will be a prize for the winning float. The winner will designate what charitable organization the parade proceeds will be donated to.

Around the same time, there will be a Fine Arts Guild Art and Vendor Fair, a picnic to support the eighth-grade trip to Washington, D.C., and open houses at Lake Mills Community School.

The Mills Theater will host another free showing of a local movie at noon with “Funeral Ladies.” The movie will be followed by the Homegrown Film Festival, featuring locally-made films of varied lengths.

“Tea Party,” a short, will be featured on the second screen at 1 p.m. followed by feature film “Run,” and the first screen will play the short “Hat Man” at 2:30 p.m., which will be followed by “Rise of the Sea Urchins.” 

There will also be a downtown bags tournament at noon.

The Burnap Country School House Museum will be open from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Lake Mills graduate Jim Dietz-Klein, who is chief development officer of Living History Farms, will be on hand to discuss the history of Lake Mills and the surrounding area. His research on the subject was featured in The Norwegian American magazine.

The band PopRocks will perform at 8 p.m. Johnson said the band performs cover songs, and dresses up as each of the artists they sing. She said people can expect 30 costume changes.

“It’s a cool show to come enjoy,” she said. 

On Sunday, the Saved by Your Bass Fishing Tournament takes place at Silver Lake Campground from 6:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., with proceeds to benefit emergency services in Lake Mills.

Lunch will be at the American Legion, followed by live music from the Murphy Brothers Band, which performs covers and original rock and blues music.

The weekend will wrap up with a celebration dinner at Sion Lutheran Church to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Lake Mills.

Johnson encouraged people to register for events at


Schedule of events


6 p.m.: Lake Mills Chamber Development Corporation Battle of the Businesses

7 p.m.: Bridal show through the decades, Salem Lutheran Church

Dusk: Outdoor movie at Oakwood Park



11 a.m.-1 p.m.: MBT Bank barbecue lunch

Noon: July Jubilee 5k pre-registration, Lake Mills Physical Therapy

Noon: Free showing of “Homeland,” The Mills Theater

5-7 p.m.: Wine tasting and hors d’oeuvres, 1901 Victorian House and Gardens

6 p.m.: July Jubilee Community Night

6:30 p.m.: Little Mr. and Ms. Lake Mills Contest, Main Street

6:30 p.m.: Men’s Slow Pitch Softball Tournament,

8 p.m.: Nate and the Moonlighters performs

Dusk: Fireworks

10 p.m.: Mill Street Band performs



7:30 a.m.: July Jubilee 5k race begins

10:30 a.m.: Parade

11 a.m.: Fine Arts Guild Art and Vendor Fair, Oakwood Park

11:30 a.m.: Parents for D.C. picnic lunch, Oakwood Park

Noon: Family fun at Oakwood Park

Noon: Downtown bags tournament

Noon: Free showing of “Funeral Ladies,” The Mills Theater

Noon: Men’s Slow Pitch Softball Tournament

1:30-3:30 p.m.: Burnap Country School House Museum open

1 and 2:30 p.m.: Homegrown Film Festival

1-3 p.m.: Lake Mills Community School open house

1 p.m.: Bingo, Civic Center

3 p.m.: Kid Power Pedal Pull, Oakwood Park

8 p.m.: Pop ROCKS performs



6:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.: Saved by Your Bass Fishing Tournament, Silver Lake Campground

8 a.m. to noon: American Legion breakfast

11 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Murphy Brothers Band performs

11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Sion Lutheran Church celebration dinner, 4525 Finch Ave.