WAUSAU — The 45th annual Possum Festival begins Friday Aug. 1, with the Possum King and Queen Contest, which will begin at 6 p.m. The gates for the event open at 5 p.m.
Emma LeighAnne Donaldson was crowned 2014 Miss Fun Day on July 26 in Wausau when the Miss Fun Day Pageant kicked off the 45th annual Possum Festival.
Nearly thirty contestants competed for titles at the pageant, including two young Fun Day King contestants.
Donaldson won the coveted Miss Fun Day title, while Cara McKinley Griffin was first runner-up.
The festival was created by Dalton Carter, who is still a Wausau resident and often referred to as the "Father of the Possum Festival." Carter is expected to be in attendance, as well as a rumored appearance to be made by Gov. Rick Scott, or Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera.
The festival weekend begins at 5 p.m. Friday with the perennial favorite, the Possum King and Queen Contest, and followed on Saturday with the annual Fun Day, which features food, music, and fun all day long.
The Possum Festival is sponsored by the Wausau Volunteer Fire Department.
All the events are held at or around the Possum Palace. The Saturday events are free to the public.
Entry age is 16 and older and there is no entry fee to sign up. Prize money will be $75 for first, $50 for second, and $25 for third.
Gate admission to the Possum King and Queen contest is $3 for adult, 12 and under free,
There will be food and craft vendors set up, so bring your chairs and enjoy.
Saturday starts with a Pancake Breakfast at 6 a.m. and the Possum Trot at 7:30 a.m. The parade will begin at 10 a.m.
Other events scheduled for the Fun Day include a sack race, hog calling. rooster crowing, cow lowing and cross cutting.
There will also be a dunking booth, water slides and inflatables for the children.
For the grown-ups, there will also be a dance from 7 to 10 p.m. featuring the band Straight Shooters. Admission is $5 a person, and 12 and under free.