Strawberry Festival in Chassell

They’re ripe, picked and ready to pile on shortcake.

The Copper Country Strawberry Festival opens today in Chassell.

The two-day festival is in its 65th year, and as many as 4,000 shortcakes will be handed out by Lions Club volunteers.

The festival features an arts and crafts fair, a fish boil and dance Friday night and the Strawberry Parade on Saturday.

“Our parade is the best in the U.P., I think,” Strawberry Festival chair Pam Hiltunen said. “It’s a good variety of attendees and participants, from music groups to the comical floats that we have.”

One of the main events is the Strawberry Queen Pageant.

“The queen competition is a wonderful draw,” Hiltunen said. “I give a lot of credit to these girls. They get out here and show their confidence, and it’s a wonderful event.”

But the real stars of the festival are the strawberries.

“But our main star is, of course, our strawberry shortcake,” Hiltunen said. “I can’t think of a better treat; like apple pie, you know, it’s our Chassell version.”