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Cannonball Day in Mason City canceled
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Cannonball Day in Mason City canceled

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Cannonball 1

Jaxen Krusey, 2, is held by his mother, Jess, as he waves out the window of the M&St.L 457 steam engine in June 2019 during Cannonball Day at East Park.

There will be no Cannonball Day this year.

After being pushed back from June 27 to Aug. 29, to account for the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, organizer Dennis Wilson announced that the yearly event would need to be nixed "due to the uncertainty of the next couple months and the unavailability of some vendors."

The canceled event joins the likes of the North Iowa Fair, North Iowa Band Festival and Clear Lake's 2020 Fourth of July celebration as happenings that won't happen because of the pandemic.

The annual Cannonball Day event, started by the Friends of the 457 more than a decade ago, highlights the Minneapolis & St. Louis steam locomotive in Mason City's East Park.

The Friends of the 457 started Cannonball Day to fund the restoration and preservation of the M&StL 457, a 1912 steam engine better known as the Rotary Cannonball. The Friends' mission for Cannonball Day is to provide a day promoting healthy living and lifestyles for kids.

According to Wilson, the River City Kiwanis and Evening Lions are still working on details of offering the Cannonball famous Chicken BBQ on Aug. 29 as a drive-up feature only. The Rotary Cannonball engine will open up for walking tours around the engine Saturday July 4th and weekends through October if conditions permit.

For more information about Cannonball Day and The Friends of the 457, visit www.friendsofthe457.org.

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