As snow fell outside the Warner Park pavilion in Gordon on May 19, Pam Boettcher focused on summer. She discussed Gordon Good Neighbor Days, slated for July 5-7, as she gave the building a spring cleaning.
In addition to the annual car show, fireworks, parade and duck race, this year will include new events, like a bean bags (cornhole) tournament, children's games and a pie-eating contest.
Every summer, the event transforms the town of 600 to a throng of thousands.
"We've estimated as many as 10,000 people here over the weekend," Boettcher said.
"It's crazy, it's exhilarating, it's fun - it's very tiring," said Becky Hoehn, director of the Gordon Memorial 5K Race, another Good Neighbor Days staple. "But it's just so wonderful to see everybody come in and be drawn to the town. It's just amazing."
Boettcher, Hoehn and other members of the Gordon Recreation Committee organize the event. For them, the countdown to the three-day shindig has already begun.
Registrations are being taken for mud volleyball and the 5K run/walk. Craft and food vendor applications are due by June 14. Residents can already start registering floats for the parade. There is no cost to enter the parade, which is themed "Through the Decades."
All proceeds raised from the three-day party go back into the event, with the remainder earmarked for park upgrades. The committee hopes to add swings, handicap accessible playground equipment and a new tennis net with this year's funds.
Hoehn said a class of Northwood School juniors will help her prepare for the 5K. This year, there will be a first- and second-place award for age categories as well as door prizes. Strollers are discouraged, as some of the route is along the WIld Rivers Trail, but pets are allowed.
Hoehn and Boettcher said they were looking forward to this year's bag tournament and pie-eating contest, which will feature pies from Norske Nook. There is a cost to take part in both events and the number of participants is limited, so those interested are encouraged to register early.
Boettcher is also sending out a call for volunteers.
"Because of those extra events, we need more volunteers to help with run the children's games," like the fishing game, ring toss and pick a duck, she said. "Somebody can volunteer their time for just a couple hours and it makes such an impact."
July 5 events will include a flea market from 1-6 p.m. and the bags tournament at 4 p.m.
Events on July 6 include a pancake breakfast from 7-11 a.m., the 5K run at 8:05 a.m., the Historical Society ice cream social from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., car show from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., parade at 2 p.m. followed by the pie-eating contest and children's games, the duck race at 4 p.m. and fireworks after dark at Warner Park.
The weekend winds down with the mud volleyball tournament at 11:30 a.m. July 7.
For more information or to register, visit the Gordon Good Neighbor Days Facebook page; the town of Gordon website, gordonwi.us.com, under the "Recreation Committee" tab; or contact the town clerk at 715-376-2693 or email@example.com.