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Small town Siouxland fairs, Marcus

21 Sep

In August I spent part of a day at a small community fair in Marcus, Iowa. The community has about 1,000 residents give or take. But it prides itself on providing this summer time venue along with a parade that runs through the downtown area of the community.

A bright sunny day for the Marcus Community Fair in Marcus, Iowa Saturday Aug. 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Emergency vehicles and local school students are part of the Marcus Community Fair parade in Marcus, Iowa Saturday Aug. 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Residents, present and former come out to enjoy the day and spend time with family and friends. I missed the earlier activities involving 4-H and the showing and exhibiting of animals and crafts. Fairs in small towns these days seem a lot smaller to me now that I am older than when I was a kid. Remembering trying not to get lost at the fairgrounds my parents took us and during the 4-H events that were held there.

It’s just time nicely spent. No hurry and enjoying the memories from my youth and seeing others enjoy their day and making memories as well.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

 

Celebrating History in Siouxland, Yankton, SD

17 Sep

As I mentioned previously a number of communities have community celebrations toward the end of summer which then leads them into the fall season. Yankton, SD recently celebrated its Riverboat Days with a parade and art fair.

Color guard at the Riverboat Days parade in Yankton, South Dakota, August 19, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Like most parades everything was patriotic. Flags were flying everywhere and for this particular parade I focused my photography on that aspect of it.

Antique cars drive through the Riverboat Days parade in Yankton, South Dakota, August 19, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

There is nothing wrong in showing one’s allegiance through flying your country’s flag. I found it interesting how some parade participants accomplished that. It challenges one to carry a theme through a shoot sometimes, although I may have broken that theme by including a band’s cheer squad’s flags, but sometimes a little contrast is needed.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Enjoying the Light in Siouxland, Sioux City

13 Sep

I attended a community gathering near where I live at a place called Peters Park. When Sioux City was first established in the late 1800’s the park was an actual park with grass and trees and a place for residents to stroll. A trolley car even ran from the Morningside area to downtown Sioux City. But that was another century or two ago and for the most part forgotten history. But businesses in the vicinity of the park, now parking lot next to a city library branch, hosted a little meet.

Pinnacle bank offered a sandwich, chips and a drink to community member during a night out at Peters Park area in Sioux City, Iowa Tuesday Sept. 5, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A local bank provided sandwiches and chip and drink while others provided DQ Dilly bars and soda and water and a local car club showed off some of its members’ rides. Classic cars some, others just gleaming with a great deal of care.

Classic cars had peoples’ attention during a night out at Peters Park area in Sioux City, Iowa Tuesday Sept. 5, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

What I like about these events is the time of day and the light. Early evening, a strong summer light still and amazing colors of the various cars. I just find it a great combination and sometimes a challenge to really show off the subject matter in what most times might not be the most flattering light. So it puts one’s skills to the test and helps to make these beauties pop.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Last Summer Fling in Siouxland, Orange City

11 Sep

Recently the Siouxland community of Orange City hosted its last city-wide celebration for the summer, its Arts on Central street fair. A family event that drew out the many inner artists, adults and kids alike, as well as local college students and some others dressed as Disney Princes and Princesses.

Sarah Weber and daughter Emma leave their (chalk) mark on the street at the Arts on Central arts street fair in Orange City, Iowa August 23, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A Princess from “Shrek” takes photos with some eager fans at the Arts on Central arts street fair in Orange City, Iowa August 23, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Local artists of all stripes presented some wares and bands performed as various venues around the downtown area. Orange City sponsors many events the middle of the week throughout the summer months as well as its annual Tulip Festival and this year it was the starting point for the RAGBRAI bike ride.

A music group sings acappella at the Arts on Central arts street fair in Orange City, Iowa August 23, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

It’s nice that the community offers events for its residents to enjoy and equally nice that the residents take advantage of the events creating a special circle that hopefully will remain unbroken. It makes for a fun evening strolling the streets, talking with friends and enjoying the last fleeting days of summer before fall starts and eventually, winter.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Annual Festival closes out Siouxland Summer, Riverboat Days Yankton, SD

9 Sep

As the summer months draw to a close I always enjoy the end of the season festivals many smaller communities hold annually. One of those is Riverboat Days in Yankton, SD. Besides the parade through the downtown area, the park along the Missouri River is filled with arts and crafts booths, music venues and food booths. Packed into a small area, one can get lost wandering among the many attractions, which on a warm but breezy day is not a bad thing.

People browse the many art booths at the Riverboat Days Festival in Yankton, South Dakota, August 19, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

There is always a diversity in the artists participating as well as musicians performing and the food offered. It’s nice to grab a seat and replenish oneself after walking a bit and to stop and enjoy whatever music you happen by as well.

A cutout for the ultimate selfie for those budding artists at the Riverboat Days Festival in Yankton, South Dakota, August 19, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Artwork from the whimsical to more serious and utilitarian pieces as well as wall art could be found at the Riverboat Days Festival in Yankton, South Dakota, August 19, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

When the festivals roll around one knows summer is coming to an end. But for me, I am ready for fall, probably my favorite season. Plus it’s nice to be able to wander and look at all the artwork people are producing as well as sit and enjoy the river flowing by, part of the roadway the Lewis and Clark and company followed. To sit and enjoy the end of a season and look forward to another beginning shortly.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Bike Adventure Starts in Siouxland, Orange City

20 Aug

Every year RAGBRAI ( Des Moines- Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) begins somewhere in western Iowa and most times begins somewhere is Siouxland. The ride has been going on since the 1970’s and continues to grow each year drawing riders from across the U.S. and even from some other countries.

John Potter, left, and dad Dale Potter of Knoxville, TN, will ride their 4th RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Participants line up to sign in for the kickoff and the ride for RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A convivial recreational bike ride that stops each night in communities along the way and where people celebrate summer with food, music, and an opportunity for even smaller communities to highlight themselves and entertain a genial crowd while boosting their economy.

Instead of Tulip Festival and Dutch history associated items, biking gear and accessories are found on the main drag for the kickoff of RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Normally Orange City, which hosted the start of the ride, is known for its celebration of its Dutch heritage and its annual Tulip Festival that draws thousands each May to enjoy in the community celebration. This year it was decked out in all things bike. And visitors and residents alike got into the spirit of it.

Brother and sister Chloe and Sam Nonhof hope some bike riders stop by to buy lemonade from them as the kickoff for the RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Residents spruce up their yards fand reflect a little of their Dutch roots or the kickoff for the RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A rider participant wears a tee shirt in an ode to Iowa that the pretty much sums up the RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) event which begins in Orange City, Iowa, Saturday July 12, 2017. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Personally I like to bike, but not in crowds, but the atmosphere of the day before the start of the ride was of a celebration with people enjoying summer time and all that the week ahead would provide. And this year participants were lucky because a heat wave with high humidity was passing and cooler weather was flowing into Iowa making the days with some 50-60 miles of riding more bearable.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

 

Surprises in Siouxland, Lake View

16 Aug

One Sunday driving around southern Siouxland I stopped by the community of Lake View and was pleasantly surprised when I found a carnival and small annual festival the town holds every year. It was a day I couldn’t spend a lot of time since I was headed to another destination, but am always happy when I find something unexpected of a pleasant nature popping up when one leasts expects it.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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