Southeast Idaho man to host free kite festival

Image Courtesy: Dean Turnblom

RIGBY, Idaho — People look to the skies for lots of things: planes, the weather and even a rainbow or two.

But, an east Idaho man is hoping people will look up for a different reason on Saturday, May 5 – kites.

“It’s just a fun thing that we’ve done,” Dean Turnblom, local kite expert and enthusiast, told KID Newsradio. “Kids like it, people like it, just kind of a fun thing to do.”

Turnblom said kite flying isn’t often viewed in a positive light or even taken seriously in east Idaho.

Image Courtesy: Dean Turnblom

“Kiting is a pretty big event in most of the rest of the places around,” Turblom said. “For us, around here, kiting started out when you were a kid and your dad was a farmer and you wanted to fly a kite in the spring and he wanted to plant. So he’d give you a quarter to go buy a paper kite and it ripped and that was it and you wasted a quarter and and that’s kite flying’s attitude Idaho.”

In recent decades, Turnblom said, kites have gone from cheaply made and easily broken to beautifully constructed and in some cases, more technical.

They’ve been designed to fly correctly,” Turnblom said. “They’ve been designed to do more things, you can fly with two lines or one line or even four lines.”

The advancement in kite construction doesn’t mean it’s become exclusively for adults though. Turnbolm said kiting is for everyone.

If you’re between five and 95, you can fly kites and have a good time,” Turblom 

Anyone who doesn’t believe that need only come to the free kite festival on Saturday, May 5, Turnblom said. Kids and adults alike can find something they enjoy whether it’s making a kite, trying their hands at some of the more complex, sport kites or just kicking back and looking to the sky.

“It‘ll just be a lot of people having a lot of fun,” Turnblom said. “We’ll be doing and running of the bulls, where it is just kind of hooking aparachute on somebody and making them run, which kind of fun. Kids love it, adults love it. We’ll have just different things like that, that are all kinds of fun.”

The kite festival will be held at Rigby High School on Saturday, May 5 from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is free and Turnblom said families are encouraged to bring their own food and enjoy a picnic under a sky full of kites.