Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

By Daria Anderson-Faden
The Observer 


Smoke, COVID Can't Stop Kimball's 94th Annual Celebration


October 1, 2020

Daria Anderson-Faden

The Farmer's Day Fun Run on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 26, came with thick smoke from wildfires outside the area.

The Kimball Public Library Book Sale started the 94th Annual Farmer's Day off on Friday afternoon with a large crowd of bookworms getting a bag of books for bargain prices.

Following the book sale was the Kimball Community Trail Fund bike races in downtown Kimball. Although the number of riders was small everyone was able to win a prize.

There was a big crowd on Friday night at the Goodhand Theatre the movie "Dolittle." About 140 people packed the theatre for the free showing.

Saturday morning in Kimball people awoke to a strong smell of smoke, ash falling from the sky and a thick cloud of smoke in the air. The Mullen Fire burning in the Medicine Bow National Forest, southwest of Centennial, Wyoming, apparently had erupted and gained in strength and the winds brought the smoke to the Panhandle.

So a smokey Saturday morning was the backdrop for the annual Farmer's Day Fun Run, but about 60 people came out to participate in spite of the smoke.

The Reverse Parade, a unique format, began at 1st and Washington, where "entrants are stationary and spectators drive/walk by them," according to parade chairperson Sandy Dominguez. "It was a good, relaxing day and I was very happy with the turnout."

No prizes were given out at the parade, but "people still wanted to be part of it," she said.

There were just a few entries early in the week but numerous calls were made and businesses, groups and organizations showed up with dozens of entries by Friday.

The Kimball Fire Department proved their devotion to the city and county as in the midst of the parade which they were part of, they received a call. Later that evening they would respond to another fire – that is after they had worked the demolition derby.

The Plains Historical Gun Raffle is an area favorite event with tickets sold from Alliance by Adam Snyder to Fort Collins by Sue Varva Zeigler and in between.

Terri Lukassen, long time member and secretary of the Plains Historical Museum, said she was pleased with the sales of the gun raffle tickets. The museum began the gun raffle in 2012 and has continued the tradition, therefore having a solid base of buyers. Although the museum board is still counting money and tickets, Terri estimated that they sold over 700 tickets.

She said, "I think we met our goal" and she was "optimistic" that they will have enough money to pay off their roof note, which is the last payment on that project. The bank note for the guns was $24,600. There was a nice, enthusiastic crowd for the raffle drawing and several of the winners were sitting in the audience, according to Lukassen.

By mid-afternoon, the north wind had cleared the skies and the Ag Society's Demolition Derby had a top notch crowd at the fairgrounds.

Daria Anderson-Faden

The demolition derby played to a full house on Saturday at the fairgrounds.

Running the derby, Tyson Culek said they had 14 cars show although some individuals from the Laramie area had to evacuate due to the Mullen fire and were unable to make the trip to Kimball. Culek was pleased that there were no injuries and no vehicles that caught fire. There were five local cars in the Demolition Derby.

The Powerwheels Derby brought 10 kids out to participate, each receiving a certificate for a personal pan pizza from Pizza Hut.

Farmer's Day continued with a great crowd at the outdoor events, such as the Cornhole Tournament, a Scavenger Hunt and the Glow Disc Frisbee Tournament.

Both Friday and Saturday concluded with the Victory Underground Band playing at Chute #7.


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