We had a very busy weekend. We started off with a barbecue to honor the chili contestants in the state chili cook-off, held in conjunction with the Manhattan Potato Festival. Stan was a contestant. It was pouring rain, so the meal was moved to the senior center. The street dance was bagged because it didn't stop raining until late in the evening. The Festival is held to honor the potato growers in the area. Manhattan area potato farmers grow about 90% of all seed potatoes used in the United States.
Stan came in third in the cook-off and won a new camp stove, $50, and a pottery chili bowl from Big Sky Carvers.
Big Sky Carvers is a company that manufactures carved wooden bears and ducks, as well as contracting with other factories to make dishes and figurines. The company has their products in stores all over the world. They are probably Manhattan's largest employer. Every year at the Potato Festival they have a huge tent sale and sell their seconds, overstocks and unfinished items for super-reduced prices. People start getting in line the evening before the sale and charge the tents when they open at 6:30 AM. (Yes, AM)
The firemen have their breakfast-their big fundraiser for the year. I think a lot of people become firefighters for one day just to help put on the breakfast. It takes tons of work to pull off, but the food is always good and it's a good opportunity to catch up with friends and neighbors.
After the festival, we went to a friend's funeral. This was a 56 year old man who went before his time. He was a co-worker of Stan's. This was quite a coincidence because the funeral was held in the same church as last Saturday's funeral. It was sad but Stan and I both got to visit with several of the guys he used to work with.
Today was church, a special service-we installed our new pastor. It was really neat-we as the Council got to lay on hands and pray for him. I think he'll be a real blessing and asset to our church.
Then this afternoon we attended a birthday party for our grand niece. I hadn't seen my nephew since their wedding two years ago, and here he is with his one year old daughter! We had good food, great conversation and were entertained by the kids' antics.
Now Stan is snoozing in front of the TV and I'm not too far behind him!