Saturday, June 23, 2012

It'll always be "Peanut Day"

The big problem, when the photographer likes to run his mouth, is that he forgets to run the camera. Which is kind of what happened yesterday evening during our "Peanut Day" open house at the museum. So many people to talk to --- so little time --- and so the selection of images is limited.

We fed about 100 people in a two-hour stretch, which is a great crowd for fairly brief event on a busy Friday evening. This vindicates Marilyn, who insisted we proceed after some of us with lesser faith were talking of pulling the plug on June and focusing on July after initial plans for the event didn't develop. As it turned out, lots of people were content just to visit, eat and look around on a beautiful cool early-summer evening.

The barn (top) continued to get a workout after several years of limited use. The Nickersons filled it for lunch last Friday, supper guests overflowed this Friday and the Roberts reunion is sceduled here next Saturday. That big wooden contraption in the foreground is a bobsled --- a wonderful piece of work that's kind of a challenge to display because of its size. Back in the day, the rack or box from a wheeled wagon would be lifted from its running gears during snowy and icy weather and placed on the sled, then used to transport hay, other items --- and people.

This was Penut Day because no matter what we call this annual June event most people just call it Peanut Day anyhow because the peanut roaster that began life a century or more ago at Piper's Grocery is always fired up and freshly roasted peanuts served. I took this quick photo of peanutmeister Bob Ulrich, planning to come back in five minutes when roasted peanuts were pouring out of it. Then forgot. We have another carton of raw peanuts in cold storage and will roast them during September or October.

Earl Herring (left here with the Mitchell boys on the right), who has written a personal memoir about growing up at Derby and now is working on a community history, was on hand to visit --- and since the Derby reunion is today drew a considerable crowd.

The 1929 Model A was a hit of the evening. Reconditioned last winter, this is the first time in several years we were able to drive it out of its storage area and onto the lawn to be a center of attraction. This photo of the Jerry Pierschbachers --- he did the reconditioning along with Al Pearson --- and Aspen Miller was taken before we opened Friday. Aspen is one of our youngest members --- and a highly qualified tour guide; Jerry, an LCHS board member.

And then there was our highly qualified hot dog crew. Others, including Marilyn and Martha, managed to avoid being in the photo, but these two were trapped behind a table.

I especially enjoyed visiting with Donald and Gwen Cottingham, of Mason City and Arizona, putting faces to names. I actually know two Gwen Cottinghams, a little unusual because of the distinctive nature of the name. I graduated from high school with Gwen, daughter of Lee; this is Gwen, married to Donald, who is a son of Lloyd. Lee and Lloyd were brothers. The latter Cottinghams were in the area for today's Derby reunion.

And then there were Dennis Boldt and Karen Chapman Werts, illustrating what happens when you go away for 40 years and still carry around images in your head of what people looked like we all were kids. So now I know what they look like now --- not that much different actually when you think about it --- and that's even better.

So the job for today is to go back to the barn and sweep up all those peanut shells so it'll be ready for next weekend.

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