Backward Glances: Historians debate whether 1970 county fair is the 'centennial' or not

Troy Krause
RFHS 1990 graduate Nathan Leeman (right) displayed the grass and bamboo hut he lived in while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines, as seen in this photo that first appeared in the July 31, 1995 Redwood Gazette.

50 years ago

July 1970

• Local historians debated whether the 1970 Redwood County fair should be considered the “centennial” fair or not. While the first Redwood County fair was held in 1870, it had been canceled in 1946 due to a polio epidemic.

• A dead grackle found in a bird bath in a Redwood Falls back yard had a band around its ankle, indicating its movements had been tracked by the U.S. Department of Natural Resources. A little research turned out the grackle had been banded April 26, 1968, near Denver, Colo.

• The Fairways grocery store in Redwood Falls used a new IBM computer-linked system in order to do inventory and pricing.

• Volunteers refurbished the old school exhibits building at the Redwood County fairgrounds to accommodate culinary, art and handicraft displays.

• Heavy rains caused the filtering system of the Redwood Falls swimming pool to break down, causing the pool to be shut down during the hottest weekend of the year so far.

• Crop duster pilot Lyle Witte survived his second helicopter crash in a month when he went down near his home in Morton. Another helicopter he owned was demolished when it fell near Vesta June 21.

25 years ago

July 1995

• Geoff Fenwick, from Auckland, New Zealand, traveled all the way to Farmfest to show off his improved brand of electric fence.

• Heavy winds ripped the entire roof off of a grain bin in Revere, severely damaging three parked vehicles below.

• Construction crews replaced near-century-old water and sewer lines under East Second and Gould streets.

10 years ago

July 2010

• A retired Washington, D.C. police officer bought the original 1892 wooden staircase from an old Redwood Falls home set to be demolished, and transported it whole to his home in Maryland.

• Cedar Rock Ranch, about 10 miles northwest of Redwood Falls, was noted by the DNR for being one of the few places in the state that had never been plowed, and it looked pretty much like the landscape did 200 years ago.

• A RVHS singing quartet – Kathleen Perry, Brooke May, Katie Ellingworth and Nikki Tatge – sang the “National Anthem” at Target Field at the beginning of a Twins game.

• The Bruce and Ann Tiffany family of rural Redwood Falls was named the 2010 Redwood County Farm Family.

• Adam Chmelar of Belview won the Franklin Catfish Derby with a 44 pound, three ounce catch.