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Our view: Are you ready for 3 months of chaos?

Another Memorial Day Weekend is in the books. So, ready or not, it's summer. Of course, around here that means three months of jam-packed weekends, things to do virtually all the time, hurry-hurry-get-there and chaos. So much chaos.

Grandma's Marathon
(2012 file, Amanda Hansmeyer / for the News Tribune)

Another Memorial Day Weekend is in the books. So, ready or not, it's summer. Of course, around here that means three months of jam-packed weekends, things to do virtually all the time, hurry-hurry-get-there and chaos. So much chaos.

And so welcomed. This is Duluth's and the Northland's season to shine, not only for the hundreds of thousands who come visiting and spending but for the tens of thousands of us who live here, play here and forge out our livelihoods here. This is our make-it time. And our time to have fun.

That starts this week with the Duluth Superior Film Festival. Pro hockey players will drop the puck on the growing annual event by attending "The Last Gladiators" tomorrow at Clyde Iron. Crispin Glover, the actor who played Marty McFly's dad in the "Back to the Future" trilogy, will be in town Saturday at Zinema 2 for a one-hour dramatic narration of his illustrated books and to present the feature film, "It's fine! EVERYTHING IS FINE." Another famous actor, Mackenzie Astin, will bring the festival to a finish Sunday by watching himself race to the finish line in the made-in-the-Northland dogsledding Disney movie, "Iron Will," at the Depot.

The Duluth Huskies open their home schedule and another summer of professional baseball in Duluth on Saturday at the Wade. The game against Mankato will be followed by fireworks.

The 1970s band Chicago takes the stage at the DECC June 16.

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Grandma's Marathon is June 22.

The 13th annual Lincoln Park Walleye Open is June 22, too, not that anyone around here needs an excuse to get out fishing.

The Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra launches four straight Thursday night performances on June 27.

The 44th annual Park Point Art Fair is June 29-30 on the sandy shores of Lake Superior at the end of Park Point.

Fourth Fest at Bayfront Festival Park boasts Minnesota's largest fireworks display and, this year, the day before, on July 3, the Aqua Net-and-spandex tribute band, Hairball.

The Twin Ports Bridge Festival is July 6, featuring Cloud Cult, The Kingston Trio, Mason Jennings and other acts.

The downtown Sidewalk Days Festival is July 10-12. It features a 13th annual classic car show and Harley revue on opening day and, a day later, unprecedented opportunities to rappel nine stories down the Sellwood Building on Superior Street, thanks to Over The Edge USA and the Greater Downtown Council.

"Movies in the Park" at Leif Erikson Park starts July 12 with a screening of "Thor."

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The Lark O' the Lake Festival, celebrating Duluth's rich aviation history while recalling the days of "The Great Gatsby," is July 12-14 at Sky Harbor Airport.

All Pints North Summer Brew Fest at Bayfront is July 13, celebrating craft beers brewed in Minnesota by breweries and brew pubs.

The eighth annual Bayfront Reggae and World Music Festival is July 20.

A highlight of the summer, the tall ships, sails into Duluth July 25-29. More than 250,000 people flooded the waterfront the last time tall ships came, in 2010, making it northern Minnesota's largest event ever. Ships confirmed to be here this year include SS Sorlandet, Peacemaker, Schooner Hindu, Flagship Niagara, Pride of Baltimore II, S/V Denis Sullivan, Privateer Lynx, and Coaster II.

Comedian Jim Gaffigan takes the Symphony Hall stage July 26. Get ready to laugh.

The popular annual Spirit Valley Days are July 31-Aug. 4 in West Duluth with the usual parade, street dance and more.

The even-more-popular Bayfront Blues Festival is Aug. 9-11 with the Robert Cray Band and other headliners still to be announced. The festival annually attracts 20,000 people who soak in 30 acts on two stages.

The Lake Superior Dragon Boat Festival is Aug. 23-24, paddling to raise money for Twin Ports Rotary clubs and the festival's charitable partner, the Essentia Health Foundation.

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Phew! Get all that? And that's just summer! And only a partial list. Our calendars are packed with chaos. Would we do summers any other way in Duluth and the Northland? Could we afford to?

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