The woodsman Paul Bunyan may be pure Western folklore, but here’s part of his legacy that’s real: Paul Bunyan Days in Fort Bragg, Calif., happening this weekend. The festival features real lumberjack skill competitions in logging and hatchet throwing as well as an ugly dog contest and Labor Day parade. And it’s all free.
The deal: There’s a lot going on at this event in Fort Bragg, a coastal town about 550 miles north of L.A., and most don’t require a fee -- unless you plan to enter. Here are some of the highlights. (Find the full schedule of events here.)
--5 p.m. Friday: Take a walk among the redwoods with Paul Bunyan (well, someone playing him) at Otis R. Johnson Wilderness Park.
--10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday: A tricycle race at 10 a.m. and horseshoe competitions until the afternoon.
--3 p.m. Saturday: The Ugly Dog Contest rounds up pets to compete in smallest, largest, prettiest, best dressed, etc., at the CV Starr Community Center. No fee to enter, so feel free to bring the dog along.
--Noon-5 p.m. Sunday: Logging competition, where male and female loggers show their woodsy stuff and compete for more than $7,000 in prize money. Contests include 20-foot ax throw, chain saw bucking, pole climb and a bunch of other saw-related skill events.
--11 a.m. Monday: Floats, bands and marchers gather for the parade with the theme Paul and Babe (the blue ox) Showcase Our Community Spirit.
When: The event takes place Friday through Monday.
Details: Events take place around the community of Fort Bragg, so consult the schedule as you plan your Bunyanesque journey. One caveat: If you’re hoping to see the gigantic Paul Bunyan and Babe statue, it’s not in Fort Bragg. You have to drive about 300 miles north to Klamath, Calif.
Info: Paul Bunyan Days