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Live music and fun mark Talent's festival

An enhanced Harvest Festival accents the City of Talent's yearlong centennial celebration.

"Talent's Harvest Festival is going to be big this year because it is the city's 100th birthday," said Suzanne Heinrich, Talent's deputy city recorder who's helping coordinate the event. "The main centennial celebration is the Harvest Festival."

In its 38th year, the 2010 Harvest Festival is planned for Saturday, Sept. 11, with a Friday warm-up featuring the Talent Art & Music Festival. At 5 p.m., local revelers will be free to stroll downtown to enjoy a melange of art, music and food at multiple venues.

"Meet artists, meet your neighbors, relax and enjoy," Heinrich said. But she advises visitors that "on Saturday, the party revs up big time."

The festival officially opens at 7 a.m. Saturday with a $5 pancake breakfast traditionally hosted by the Lion's Club in the Talent community center, 206 E. Main St.

Sponsored by Southern Oregon Runners, a 5-kilometer run/walk and 10-kilometer run will begin at 8 a.m. at the skateboard park with registration at 7 a.m. Runners in both events should be done in time to watch the Main Street parade at 10 a.m.

Heinrich promises surprises for parade goers on Saturday, including an expanded parade: "There will be floats and very special parade entrants that you've never seen before."

Following the parade, the festival offers a full day of music with an abundance of vending booths.

The Purple Heart Band kicks off musical festivities at 10:45 a.m. on the center stage by City Hall, followed by Salsa Brava, Blue Lightning and the Southern Oregon Jazz Orchestra until 3:30 p.m. The Rogue Valley Harmonizers will roam the festival throughout the day.

Vendors will display art, crafts, clothing, toys and information about the city and its surroundings. Other attractions include food and beverage vendors, with Rogue Valley growers.

Creative craft projects for adults and children will be available at the event, provided by Party Ponies, ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum, Balloons by Gary, Jill the Clown and the Roller Derby Dunk Tank.

Heinrich's choice for "must-see of the day" will be Talent's centennial quilt displayed at the Centennial and Historical Society booth, where souvenir T-shirts also will be available.

The city began its 100-year celebrations in February and plans a dedication of a commemorative clock in front of City Hall and burial of two time capsules on Nov. 2. For more information, contact Talent City Hall at 541-535-1566 or see www.cityoftalent.org.

Vera Westbrook is a reporting intern for the Mail Tribune and can be reached at intern1@mailtribune.com.