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Viking Fest gets its big booms back

POULSBO — 2007 might be known as the year Viking Fest got its bang back but lost its roots after a fiery debate over grass.

Any uncertainty about the return of fireworks after a two-year hiatus ended Sunday afternoon as Viking Fest executive secretary Kathi Foresee said the necessary funding had been secured.

“The fireworks are going to be Friday night,” Foresee said. “I think it helps kick things off.”

Several unnamed donors have stepped to the forefront to ensure the skies over Liberty Bay welcome visitors in true Viking Fest style, she said.

“It’s been two years since we had them, so we’re glad to have them back,” she said. While the dazzling nighttime displays are returning, the Glam Folk, which sets up a Viking Village, may not land on the shores of Little Norway this year, Foresee said.

“We haven’t heard yet, but we would really hate to lose them,” she said.

Festival organizers didn’t realize the renovations to Waterfront Park, which included planting grass on the area traditionally reserved for the Viking Village, would become such an issue, Foresee said.

“We’re going to see what happens,” she said. “It’s up to them.”

A final decision hasn’t been made by city officials, but last Wednesday’s city council meeting was punctuated by a heated debate between Councilman Mike Regis and Mayor Kathryn Quade on the public use of the park this summer.

Tonight a binding decision should be made as the council’s community services committee will revisit the issue prior to the council meeting at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at city hall on Jensen Way.

Even with all of the challenges, this year’s festival organizers have faced they are ready to kick off the week leading up to Viking Fest on Saturday at Valley Nursery.

Seattle radio personality Flo from 94.1 FM KMPS will do a live remote from noon to 2 p.m. May 12 in an event sponsored by this year’s parade co-sponsors Valley Nursery and the Kitsap Realtors Association. Festival T-shirts, sweatshirts, carnival wristbands and buttons will be available at the event.

“There is a limited amount of wristbands available. They will be first come, first served,” Foresee said. The $15 wristbands will only be available at Viking Bank on State Route 305.

The T-shirts, sweatshirts and buttons can be purchased at 1st Security Bank in Poulsbo Village. Buttons can also be procured at the mayor’s office in city hall.

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