Brooklyn Park Lions Host Smelt Fry
The World’s Largest Art Kvamme Memorial Smelt Fry started on Wednesday. The fundraiser is one of the longest running social events in Brooklyn Park and raises money for Brooklyn Park Lions Club projects.
More than 50 years ago, a Brooklyn Park Lions Club member went to Duluth to get some smelt. There, he got an idea for a new fundraiser.
“He said that’s a good idea and I think our club should start that,” remembers Delores Kvamme, Art’s widow. “He came back and told the Lions we should start a Smelt Fry and that’s how it started.”
Art Kvamme was former Brooklyn Park mayor and member of the Lions Club. He passed away in 2018, but is remembered each year at the fundraiser he helped start.
“Art Kvamme is the one who started this thing and we’ve been doing this ever since,” said Norm Riska, a member.
World’s Largest Smelt Fry
The fundraiser now claims to be the “World’s Largest Smelt Fry” and is attended by more than two thousand people who attend over three days.
“All the money raised in this event goes back in the community,” said Roger Backstrom, the current Lions Club president. “You are part of something much bigger by just enjoying the smelt.”
The Brooklyn Park Lions Club Smelt Fry runs until April 26 at the Brooklyn Park Community Activity Center and tickets are $15 at the door.