The Deer River Lions Club pays homage to the region’s wild rice with its annual Deer River Wild Rice Festival in Deer River, Minn. on July 6 - 8.
Headlining the festival’s meal schedule is the United Methodist Church Wild Rice dinner, an opportunity to taste Deer River wild rice.
Although the locals take much pride in their wild rice, the festival presents a variety of different eating options for those who attend. The Sportsman’s Club Turtle Feed offers a snapping turtle stew, a peculiar yet prided dish served annually since the 1960’s. There is also a turkey dinner with all the fixings on July 8 and a hamburger stand that makes hamburgers topped with raw or fried onions.
What started out as a humble gathering intended to unite a community around its beloved wild rice supply has now turned into a wild rice feast featuring a parade, musical performances, rides for kids, and fireworks.