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Rushford Days 2014 packed full of fun

Fri, Jul 25th, 2014
Posted in Rushford Features

A young participant in the Rushford Days 2014 Mutton Bustin event takes a fall along with the sheep. Photo by Barb Jeffers

The City of Rushford, Minn. was blessed with perfect weather for Rushford Days 2014 which was held July 14-20. The sunshine and warm temperatures brought a large crowd who did not let road construction in town stop them from enjoying the celebration.

The official celebrating began Monday evening with the Queen Pageant at the High School Gymnasium. Christina Strapp was crowned Queen with Courtney Gravos and Emily Rasmussen as attendants. Little Miss Rushford 2014 is Aubrey Ingvalson, according to the events Facebook page.

Tuesday evening brought many kids to the Rushford Aquatic Center for the Teen Swim Night which is a fun way for the teenagers to get together and cool off at the same time.

Ferndale Country Club held a Car Cruise Night on Wednesday night as attendees enjoyed music by Last Call Meldahl while also taking time to enjoy the beautiful scenery and spending time with friends.

Wine lovers poured into the American Legion Thursday evening for a Wine Tasting event where they could sample their favorite wines and also try some new blends. Younger kids had their own event on Thursday evening with the 6 - 12 Grade Teen Dance at the Fest Tent.

The annual event geared up on Friday with the food vendors serving at the Fest Grounds. The choice of food and drinks was so varied that it made the choice of what to eat a difficult one. Philly steak sandwiches, Mexican food, mini donuts, cheese curds, and pitas were only a few of the delectable’s available.

Stumpy’s of Rushford had their concession wagon filled with pizza slices, corn dogs, and corn brats which is a brat cooked in the same batter as a corn dog and is very tasty. Isaac Rasmussen, 6, son of Josh and Danielle Rasmussen of Rushford seemed to really enjoy his foot long corn dog!

Cub Scouts Pack 53 volunteers Lorelei Bunke, Chloe Bunke, 13, and Caleb Bunke, 8, sold Gatorade and water for those who felt a little parched and wanted their money to go to a worthy cause.

Bingo began at the Fest Grounds Friday evening which was sponsored by St. Joseph’s Youth Group. Nolan Mueller, 14, Alora Wilkemeyer, 11, and Olivia Hoff, 14, did a great job working at the Bingo Tent as did many others in the group and provided entertainment for many who hoped to shout out that they had gotten b-i-n-g-o!

The Root River Saddle Club sponsored pony rides at the Fest Grounds which the kids loved and the event also provided a great photo opportunity for parents to snap a picture of their child on a pony and photo opportunities were also available with kids playing on the inflatable’s including a water slide.

Mutton Bustin was a very popular event again this year as it has been during previous Rushford Days celebrations. A large group of children tried their best to ride their sheep as long as possible while some decided against riding the sheep once their time came to climb on.

The sheep were supplied by Kelley O’Neill and Cindy Wolf, DVM of the Sheep Improvement Company. Leader “Moose” Hagedorn helped the kids get on the sheep and get ready to ride. There were many other volunteers helping including Rick Ruberg, Brett Bergan, Bruce Nelson, Chris Hammell, Cory Feine, and Owen Smith. Sponsors of the Mutton Bustin were Jacobson Dozing and Shale, Farmer’s Elevator of Rushford, Brown Tire & Battery, and Connaughty Industries.

Following Mutton Bustin was the Burn Out where participants burn their tires and create as much smoke as possible. The crowd’s reaction to each burn out decided the winner. There were men and women who entered the Burn Out in several types of cars and trucks including a Cadillac.

Friday night’s activities wrapped up with a dance in the Fest Tent with music provided by Pastel Black who had the crowd in attendance dancing the night away.

The action was up and running early on Saturday, July 19, with registration for the 5K Run/Walk sponsored by the Rushford Operation Christmas Child Group at 7 a.m. and also a Pancake Breakfast by the Masonic Lodge beginning at the same time.

Niggle Field was busy on Saturday with a Softball Tournament and the RPHS Gymnasium held a Basketball Competition with many people attending both events. A Craft Fair took place at the Rushford Fire Department with unique and handmade items and also showing their talents were participants in the photo contest at the Fest Grounds.

A Minnesota State Sanctioned Pedal Tractor Pull sponsored by Hammell Equipment and 660 Agronomics was another popular event with kids trying their hardest to keep moving. 3 on 3 Basketball was played in the RPHS Gymnasium which was followed by the Tractor Pull which took several hours and had the audience supporting their favorite tractor drivers.

Men and women alike enjoyed walking around the Car & Semi Show which was located in the parking lot of Pam’s Corner while kids had a great time riding in the Little Blue Choo that took them for a tour of the Fest Grounds.

Many visitors to the Rushford Foods parking lot happily agreed to have a photo taken with the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, one of six in the Wienermobile fleet that covers the United States. Wayne Hasleiet of Rushford smiled and posed for the camera as Jennie Schen who travels with the vehicle took his photo. Anyone who sang the Oscar Meyer wiener song (oh, I wish I was an Oscar Mayer wiener...) received a free t-shirt from Rushford Foods.

Cub Scouts Pack 53 was also in the Rushford Foods parking lot serving hot dogs and water with Jonah Buchanan, 7, and Payton Smith, 8, serving customers with a smile along with the other volunteers from the group.

By noon on Saturday the American Legion’s Pork Chop Dinner sounded like a great lunch for many residents and visitors who had worked up quite an appetite participating in the mornings events.

Vikings cheerleaders made several appearances throughout the day on Saturday signing Vikings calendars and taking photographs with fans. Balloon artist Kevin Lindh’s handy work could be seen all over Rushford as kids ran around with balloon animals, guitar’s, hats, and other balloon creations.

Kids hopped at the chance to enter the Frog Jumping Contest hoping that their frog would bring a win. Isabelle Green was one of the lucky children whose frog earned her a trophy. Isabelle is the daughter of Karen & Jeff Gerdes and Scott Green.

Children also got excited about the temporary tattoos which were available. Karissa Ronnenberg, 7, and her brother Coltan, 4, both had tattoos applied and were happy with the results. Karissa and Coltan’s parents are Mark and Alicia Ronnenberg of Rushford.

In case people were not aware Rushford’s Got Talent and participants proved that in the variety show which took place in the Fest Test and had entrants singing, dancing, and anything else they considered their talent.

Even though no Grand Parade was held this year the Grande Kiddie Parade was fun for all who watched the parade stroll down the bike trail through the Fest Grounds. Kids and families in costumes, on bikes, and even riding in a canoe on wheels made the crowd smile and wave. Casey and Shannon Ingvalson of Rushford dressed up in superhero costumes with their children Aubrey,8, Madison, 5, and Jackson, 3, for the parade.

Troubleshooter provided entertainment in the Fest Tent Saturday night and, as always, had the crowd dancing and singing along with their music. Those who won items at the Grace Place fourth annual Silent Auction which took place during Rushford Days were probably dancing as well.

A Waffle Breakfast sponsored by St. Joseph’s Catholic Church was the perfect way to start Sunday morning as many people began the 25 mile Antique Tractor Ride. An Ecumenical Church Service was then held at Creekside Park followed by a delicious Chicken Q sponsored by the American Legion Riders.

The activities continued with the Magic of Isaiah, a Bean Bag Tournament, and Tractor Games at the Fest Grounds and ended with a dance featuring Brat Pack Radio in the Fest Test which lasted until 11:30 p.m., marking the end of Rushford Days for 2014.

To view hundreds of photos from Rushford Days 2014 visit facebook/fillmorecountyjournal.

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