There's a dynasty of mini-mayors in the making in Dorset, Minn.

Bobby Tufts, the 6-year-old former mayor of Dorset, has endorsed his 3-year-old brother, James, to succeed him. Young James made his first major media appearance Monday evening on WCCO-TV, where he pledged to run on a pro-ice-cream platform in this Sunday's balloting.

Mayors of Dorset — an unincorporated community of about 25 near Park Rapids in Hubbard County — wield no power, have no official duties, earn no salary and are elected in a tongue-in-cheek ballot at the annual Taste of Dorset festival.

A similar festival-based election system resulted in a dog — a 7-year-old Great Pyrenees named Duke — becoming mayor of Cormorant, Minn., last year.

Bobby Tufts won the Dorset election twice, at ages 3 and 4, before losing his bid for a third term to a 16-year-old challenger last summer. At age 5, Minnesota's youngest mayor became its youngest ex-mayor.

"It was fun, but it's time to pass on the vote," Bobby told the Associated Press at the time.

This year, the office of mayor could pass to James, who donned a newsboy cap and headed out to glad-hand the crowds, with a WCCO camera crew in tow.

If elected, James pledged to "eat ice cream all day."

Taste of Dorset festivalgoers pay $1 per ballot and can vote as often as they like. All of the proceeds go to support the festival.

Jennifer Brooks