116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
RIVERSIDE — This weekend, “Trekkies” will converge on downtown Riverside for TrekFest XXXVI.
TrekFest is the latest area event to make a comeback this year after having to cancel last year’s festivities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“People are excited,” said Kevin Meller, who is heading the organization of this year’s TrekFest. “People are looking to be able to go out and do things.”
Meller said that the goal was to make TrekFest XXXVI look and feel like it did in previous years.
“Our goal all along was to make it feel like years past,” he said. “We wanted to get back to some normalcy and the small-town community atmosphere.”
Veterans of previous TrekFest will recognize many of the events.
“If you look at our schedule, it’s very similar to years past,” Meller said. “We have the demo derby. We have our parade. We have our bands. We have our pancake breakfast. We have our guest speakers.”
This year’s guest speakers are Robin Curtis and John Paladin.
Curtis played Lt. Saavik in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock — the theme for this year’s TrekFest — and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.
“We always like having some of the actors to talk about what it was like being on the set and being part of something that stood the test of time,” Meller said.
Curtis will sign autographs at The Voyage Home Museum at 6 p.m., Friday.
Paladin is, among other things, a special effects makeup artist who has worked on Star Trek: Of Gods and Men and Star Trek: Kitumba.
Meller said that Paladin may even do some makeup demonstrations.
“It’s fun to watch someone get transformed into someone completely different,” Meller said.
Both Curtis and Paladin will take part in a question-and-answer session at either the Riverside Fire Station or Riverside City Hall at 2:30 p.m., Saturday.
“The location will depend on the weather,” Meller said.
Other Friday highlights include the demolition derby at 6 p.m., a Star Trek trivia contest at 8 p.m. in Railroad Park and a showing of Star Trek III: The Search for Spock at 10:30 p.m. in Hall Park.
Saturday kicks off with a pancake breakfast at St. Mary’s Catholic Church from 7-11:30 a.m.
The parade through downtown Riverside begins at 10 a.m., which is followed by a costume contest on the main stage in Hall Park.
There will be musical performers throughout TrekFest. They include:
• Rachel Baiman, 8:30-10 p.m., Friday.
• David Zollo, 7-9:45 a.m., Saturday.
• Scarlett Roxx, 12:30-3:30 p.m., Saturday.
• Tanya English Band, 4-7 p.m., Saturday.
• Boot Jack Band, 8-11 p.m., Saturday.
There will be numerous food vendors and activities throughout the event as well.
TrekFest will close with a fireworks show at dusk on Saturday.
“There are so many things to do,” Meller said. “No matter what you enjoy, there’s something for you here.”