This year's Heritage Days kicked off on Wednesday night with the 6:30 pm flag raising in Central Park. There is a ton of activities taking place all over Faribault as a part of Heritage Days. Whether it's kayaking down the Cannon River, taking a tour at the Woolen Mill, or just jamming out to a band during the evening hours in Central Park there are a whole host of reasons why you should stop out and take it all in. Here are my Top-5 reasons in no particular order.

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1. The Heritage Days Car Show/Downtown Car Cruise-In. It's a sea of shining chrome, slicked out wheels, and plenty of color and muscle. From 5-9pm Friday downtown Faribault turns into a parking lot featuring plenty of classic cars from around the area. Stop down pick out your favorite and talk with the owners.

(Photo by Kerry Marshall/Getty Images)

2. Soap Box Races! Flashback to your youth and watch these tiny drivers fly in their soapbox derby cars! It doesn't get more fun than watching these kids compete. It takes place Saturday morning at 9am from Peace Lutheran Church. Check-in between 7:30 and 9am to participate.

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3. Learn about the area's history with a kayak tour down the Cannon River. If you are newer to the area like I am, there is a ton that I don't know about. Plus I enjoy history so this is something you should come try. The kayak tour starts at 12:30 at the King Mill Dam. You can bring your own canoe or kayak or rent one to take part in the tour of area mills, bridges, and other spots along the Cannon.

Picture: K Krage

4. The carnival at Central Park. There is a new ride operator this year and it happens to be Faribault's own Gold Star Amusements. From the iconic Tilt-A-Whirl to a Gravitron they even have a Ferris Wheel for both young and old to enjoy. The carnival hours are on Friday from 5-11pm and on Saturday from Noon to 10pm.

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5. Nightly Music in the Park and the beer tent. There will be a little bit of everything for people coming to Heritage Days this weekend Friday night Smoke Screen will be performing 8pm to Midnight with the beer garden opening at 4pm. And on Saturday night you can expect to hear the Magic Sunshine Band 8pm to Midnight. On Saturday the beer starts flowing at noon.

Looking forward to seeing some people out at Heritage Days this weekend!