Rodeo and Finn Fest and Fun! Fun! Fun!

Jul 27, 2012 | 1 comment

First Rodeo Queen Bitty Redell

Just when I think that summer can’t get any more fun-packed, the last weekend in July is on the horizon and there are enough choices to make my head spin.  We’ve narrowed it down to taking in the rodeo and the Finn Fest, or at least as much of each as we can manage.

It’s the 67th Annual Long Beach Rodeo and I wish I could report that I’ve been to most of them, but the best I can do is say that I went to the very first one in 1945 when Bitty Redell was rodeo queen.  Or at least I think I did.

My memory is a little foggy about that.  I remember that Shorty Wright and his boys were involved and maybe even his daughters, Trula and Kay.  Or maybe the girls were too young.   They lived in Oysterville and were the envy of us all because they each had a horse.  I think it was the Wrights who started the horse trend in Oysterville.  As a summer kid, I didn’t have one, but all my friends did and if I was lucky, they’d let me ride.

The Finnish-American Folk Festival in Naselle is a more recent event.  It began in 1982 and occurs only every two years which always makes it feel like a “must go to.”  Besides that, our neighbor Sue Holway is one of the prime movers and shakers of the Finn Fest.  This year her new play, “Roots Running Deep,”  is being presented as readers’ theater and I am eager to see it.

Unfortunately, we are having trouble tracking down the times of those presentations.  You’d think, in a normal sort of world, that I could run next door and ask Sue, but she’s been over at the Appelo Center or who-knows-where for weeks in preparation.  I’m hoping one of the other neighbors knows and that it’s not too late.

No matter what, it will be a grand weekend here on the peninsula with events like the Cowboy Breakfast and music by Double J and the Boys and all those brave and handsome riders in their ten gallon hats and bun-hugging Levis.  And, right around the corner in Naselle, there will be Maypole dancers and Wilho Saari playing the kantele, the Barbershop Quartet as well as the Naselle Marimba Band — to say nothing of food and crafts and familiar faces.

It will truly be a weekend to remember.

1 Comment

  1. Jean stamper

    I think “Sandsation” starts this weekend too or maybe it doesn’t begin until Monday. Anyway lots going on all summer.


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