Tag Archives: parade

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot like the Holidays in Siouxland, Sioux City

7 Dec
Two parade attendees show off their “lighted” necklaces at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The “holiday spirit” has begun in the Siouxland region. A number of communities like Sioux City have begun with their lighted parades and other festivities now that Thanksgiving is past and Christmas is only a couple, three weeks away.

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A parade princess waves to the crowd at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

At night the Christmas lights and decorations light up neighborhoods, a cheery reminder to people about the approaching Christmas holiday, when hopefully more people take to heart the meaning of Christmas and put aside their vitriolic beliefs and really consider loving their neighbor. But I suppose that is a large Christmas ask as political parties and failed politicians continue to push their agendas.

But the chance for a momentary set aside to again think like a child and enjoy the magic of Christmas might give some folk pause to enjoy the present and wish their fellow citizens a Merry Christmas.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

The city Christmas tree and other decorations lit on the grounds of the Sioux City Public Museum during the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A local union participates in the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Flag marches with a drum corp at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A drum line keeps the beat during the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Children yell for more candy to be tossed during the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Lighted Parade marching along 4th Street in Sioux City, Iowa Monday, Nov. 22, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Celebrating a Siouxland Fourth of July, Storm Lake

8 Jul

A couple dresses in their red, white and blue balloon finest as they participate in Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

 

A mother and daughter display their patriotic style as they attend Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 parade and festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

Storm Lake, Iowa is kind of an American story made for the Fourth of July. A small Siouxland town melting pot that honors its freedom and a diverse population that helps ensure it. At one time a slowly dying town, the community now contains people from at least 15, maybe 20 nationalities that make up its workforce and population.

Storm Lake, Iowa is made up of many diverse nationalities where South Bend, IN mayor and 2020 Democrat presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg (not pictured) campaigns Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 Parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

 

Various nationalities make up Storm Lake, Iowa’s population and South Bend, IN mayor and 2020 Democrat presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg (not pictured) campaigns during Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 Parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

So for the July 4 celebration its residents don their collective native traditional dress and parade through its streets along a lake that is its one main attraction. And the several block parade is teeming with folk there to watch, plus the candy that the kids get to take home since all floats toss candy.

The Peterson, Iowa Lion’s Club antique fire engine is decked out in U.S. flags as they participate in Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 Parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

 

The Tubador plays more favorites after the parade during Storm Lake, Iowa for July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But after the parade finishes, the park along the lake front is alive with music and artisans and food tents, all adding to a festive environment for all to celebrate together.

People took shelter in the shade of the Living Heritage Tree Museum along the lake front during Storm Lake, Iowa July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A few art tents display wares for sale during the Storm Lake, Iowa July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Charles Bade, a former resident of Storm Lake, Iowa creates new are for the July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The Brown’s Family group played and sang favorites of the audience during the Storm Lake, Iowa July 4 festivities, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The tree filled park makes for a nice place to relax and enjoy the company of your friends, listen to the entertainment or grab a bite to eat, besides perusing items for sale. And as a small town, Storm Lake is like so many others. Thankful and happy to have one day to enjoy with community neighbors and visitors where all come together for a community celebration.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

People checked out the many food booths and artists’ tents in the Living Heritage Tree Museum area along the lake front during the Storm Lake, Iowa July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Young people hang out on the lake front during the Storm Lake, Iowa July 4 festivities, Thursday, July 4, 2019. Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A couple celebrates Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 parade while South Bend, IN mayor and 2020 Democrat presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg (not pictured) campaigns in the parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

 

A family is dressed in home country outfits to show their heritage as they participate in Storm Lake, Iowa’s July 4 Parade, Thursday, July 4, 2019.

Celebrating Dutch Heritage in Siouxland, Orange City

4 Jun

A young boy rests in his father’s arms as his mom explains he needs a nap during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Catching every corner of the street these two ladies leave no inch untouched during the street scrubbing at the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The annual Siouxland Tulip Festival recently once again allowed the community of Orange City to exhibit its Dutch roots and heritage and program a nice day for those attending for a pleasant day trip and a community celebrating. There are some tasty treats both in seeing costumes depicting various regions of the Netherlands as well as food items. Many people participating in the festivities have been doing so for years, maybe decades, beginning when they were students in the schools and later as adults.

There is always time during the Straat Feest to take time and say hello to friends as participants “model” authentic, distinct and varied Dutch attire from the Netherlands during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Local high school students perform traditional Dutch dances at the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Civilians “hoof it” across the street as local high school students hoof it as they perform traditional Dutch dances during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

I always fascinated watching people and while it shouldn’t I am still surprised  that with so much activity going on around one that some folk, while possibly sharing the day, seem more likely disconnected from what is actually happening.

With a lot of Tulip Festival activity going on around them, two young ladies still find time to possibly do social media while in Orange City, Iowa, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But it’s fun to see folk sharing their heritage and for some school children, especially those involved in the street cleaning, there may be a little more going on. One young man this year seemed to get caught between his many friends while preparing the streets for the parade.

Participants chat as they await the start of the the Straat Feest where they “model” authentic, distinct and varied Dutch attire from the Netherlands during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The amount of fun that school children (boys) have when cleaning the “dirty” streets is not lost on them, especially on a warm day during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The amount of fun that school children (boys) have when cleaning the “dirty” streets is not lost on them, especially on a warm day during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The amount of fun that school children (boys) have when cleaning the “dirty” streets is not lost on them, especially on a warm day during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Ah, what are friends for anyway but to share experiences they can look back on in years to come. And possibly have families that remain in the area and see their children partaking of the same experiences and making their own memories with their friends and sharing a pride of community and heritage that defines a special time and place.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

The bristles on the broom look well worn away as a mother also pulls a wagon with her daughters “resting” during the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A display of wooden shoes at the Orange City, Iowa Tulip Festival, Thursday, May 16 2019. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Celebrating Labor in Siouxland, Calliope Historical Village, Hawarden

6 Oct

Siouxland is home to a number of a number of historical significance to the region, much like many early settlements in many locations around the country. Calliope Village, according to an official listing at the site of the city of Hawarden where the village is located, came into existence in 1860. “History reports that Sioux County, Iowa was founded January 20, 1860, on the banks of the Big Sioux River on the north edge of what is now Hawarden. Our “founding fathers” were Frederick Hubbell, W.H. Frame, Joseph Bell, and E.L. Stone who founded the settlement of Calliope (Kal’ e ope) for the express purpose of receiving a regulation count salary for organizing a county in Iowa.

In 1869, Calliope consisted of a courthouse, three log homes and about 10 residents. The infant town was driven back to the safety of Sioux City by Indian uprisings. In 1871, the Indians calmed down and the few rugged individuals who were willing to brave the wilderness returned to the settlement to find the original courthouse standing. By 1872 Moses Lewis bought out the remaining initial investors and used the office to issue fraudulent bonds. It wasn’t until 1874 that the settlement of Calliope was actually home to the earliest settlers. Progress came with a hotel, cabins and finally viability was enhanced greatly by the formation of a stage coach line to transport people to and from Sioux City.”

Calliope Historical Village open Labor Day in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

That history and the historical village is all that remains of that early settlement. Fundraising and area residents made the village possible to remind current and future residents of the community’s historical background.

So it’s nice to visit the village on a holiday and see people stroll the grounds and check it out. Or relax and enjoy some music provided by a washtub band whose creation was musician’s Jerry Toft.

People celebrate Labor Day visiting the Calliope Historical Village in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Musician Jerry Toft plays a washtub bass and performs standards for visitors along with his friends at the Calliope Historical Village during Labor Day in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

People celebrate Labor Day visiting the Calliope Historical Village and listening to a washtub band in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©

I visit the place from time to time. Sometimes with a class I teach and other times during the holidays or when I am passing through the area. The days are always different and so is the light. The village isn’t always open but it’s still nice to stop by and see. Of course the side attractions that come during days like Labor Day are not always present, and are a look back into time itself, and just fun to photograph.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Antique tractors carry a shine while on show at the Calliope Historical Village during Labor Day in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Collectible farm tractors for some, on display at the Calliope Historical Village during Labor Day in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Someone with a bias toward red tractors as a number of
Allis-Chalmers are on display at the Calliope Historical Village during Labor Day in Hawarden, Iowa Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Learning History in Siouxland, Sheldon

4 Sep

A number of communities in Siouxland have a museum. Sheldon‘s Prairie Museum is located in a former Carnegie Library building which is as beautiful today as it was when originally built.

The Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The Sheldon Prairie Museum was a former Carnegie Library in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Most of the museums I visit contain local history, photos of past residents and early pioneers as well as yearbooks of now closed schools if they are small communities who have seen their school districts consolidate with other nearby communities as small towns have gotten smaller.

I found the Prairie Museum unusual in the sense that it showcased some hard, not very nice history as well as the usual past. One display case talks about Mrs. Burnice Geiger, a daughter of a bank president of the Sheldon National Bank which residents learned in the late 1950’s and early ’60’s that Mrs. Geiger had been embezzling funds for many, many years, totaling a little over $2 million.

A display in the Sheldon Prairie Museum tells the story of a woman who embezzled money from a local bank in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

And in the mid 1920’s another not so savory piece of history involved a Klan Konklave which is some still prevalent in parts of the United States. But since Iowa fought on the side of the Union during the Civil War locals were astonished that such an event could happen in their midst.

A display in the Sheldon Prairie Museum tells the dark history of a Ku Lux Klan enclave that occurred in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The story of a Ku Klux Klan Konclave appears in an exhibit in the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The museum has happier pieces of history and volunteers that help inform a visitor about various exhibits. One small room in the museum is pretty much the same as when a family occupied their home, the furniture still intact and original except for some reupholstering. Giving viewers a look backward into time at actual local residents.

Volunteer JoAnn DenBeste gives some background on exhibits at the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The photo represents the look inside a Sheldon home in 1937, and the furniture in the photo is now at the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

The furniture in the exhibit remained the same as it was in a home in 1937 and except for some upholstery work and repairs is now an exhibit in the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Museums such as Prairie Museum help a visitor understand a community and give a better insight of history, good or bad, that residents encountered. Making a visit more meaningful and receiving a better understanding of times past.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A variety of exhibits can be found in the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Earlier residents of Sheldon, Iowa, now on display at the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A photograph of early Sheldon residents, and survivors of the American Civil War, now on display at the Sheldon Prairie Museum in Sheldon, Iowa Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Small Town parades in Siouxland, Ashton

21 Aug

I like visiting small communities throughout Siouxland. They are such a slice of small town America, at least what I remember as a child growing up in Illinois. Different people from different backgrounds and geographic locations recall different memories. But events here like the Town and Country Festival in Ashton is a community event for those specific people. And they enjoy themselves and seeing friends, family and whomever else might happen to stumble into the parade. And all take great pride.

Those who served still honor parades and their country as at the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Small communities like these are still tied very much to the surrounding agriculture that occurs in places like Iowa. And so it figures that farming is part of an event or parade.

In small town parades farm equipment is part of the entourage like in the parade for the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Agriculture plays a large part in many small communities even during a parade such as at the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

And the other part of any parade is candy that is tossed out to the kids, sometimes with parents helping, as they gather the treats that might see them through to the next holiday like Halloween or maybe just the next parade.

Kids with some assistance from parents and grandparents collecting candy during the parade at the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Most everyone knows who is sitting on the sidelines watching or those in the parade itself. Enjoying a summer’s day, nice weather and a community celebration, until next year.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A driver and “passenger” waving to the “crowd” attending the parade during the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Even in small towns people still line the street for parades such as at the Ashton, Iowa Town and Country Festival Saturday, Aug.4, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

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

Summer Festival in Siouxland, Hull, Iowa

15 Jul

Hull, Iowa, celebrated its SummerFest in Siouxland this past weekend with events for children and a parade Saturday that didn’t lack in floats or candy. The town pride’s itself as the best candy parade in the state of Iowa. And it doesn’t hurt that the Foreign Candy Company is located within the town’s limits. The Hull Chamber of Commerce sponsored the 3-day event which drew a large crowd for Saturday’s parade. The children should be happy until Halloween with the amount of candy they were collecting. Addtional photos of Saturday’s parade can be found here.

Jerry Mennenga, Sioux City, Iowa

Siouxland PRCA rodeo, Cherokee

4 Jun

The Cherokee, Iowa, Chamber recently hosted a PRCA rodeo over the weekend with livestock supplied by the Barnes Rodeo Stock Company located in Peterson, Iowa. A parade preceding the event Saturday, June 2, 2012, through the downtown area of Cherokee was a fun event with a variety of floats, animals, (horses of course) and people getting everyone in the mood for the rodeo that followed. A jail break event even occurred during the parade put on by the Western Iowa Border Agents re-enactors. And of course, the rodeo that followed thrilled the spectators but left some of the contestants more bruised and broke than happy and paid. More photos here.

Jerry Mennenga, Sioux City, Iowa

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