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Dairy Days in Soldiers Grove kicks off the local fun
Dairy Days Parade
THE WINNING ‘Dairy Theme Float’ in the 2018 Dairy Days Parade was the North Clayton Cardinal 4-H Club’s “Hooked on Dairy.” Seven-year-old club mem-ber Jamison Adkins really got into the spirit of things, spraying hot parade-goers with nice cool water. The North Crawford second-grader is the son of James and Becky Adkins of Rolling Ground.

SOLDIERS GROVE - It seems every year it is more important than the last to celebrate June Dairy Month in Wisconsin. The 2019 observance is no exception, with some describing the current situation with the dairy economy as a ‘depression’ rather than a ‘recession.” Still, dairy is a fine old tradition in the county, and remains an important part of the local economy. 

Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection Secretary Brad Pfaff summed it up well recently:

“I know dairy farmers across our state have faced tremendous challenges and hard decisions over the past five years. I recognize the extreme financial and emo-tional hardships these fami-lies have been experiencing. But this June Dairy Month, so I want us to highlight the great pride we have in Wisconsin for our dairy industry. It is the pride that keeps our dairy farmers going -- pride in their family, pride in their farms, and pride in our great state.”

The annual Dairy Days event, planned for Soldiers Grove on Saturday and Sunday, June 15-16, represents a great opportunity to come together to show your support for the dairy industry – locally and statewide. And not only, that, it is an opportunity to kick your heels up and celebrate the end of a long, hard winter, and a wet planting season.

The Village of Soldiers Grove has also been hard at work cleaning up and finishing repairs to their park that was extensively damaged in the historic 2018 flood. Led by the American Legion Post 220, as well as the hard work of the Public Works team and countless volunteer hours by citizens, the park area in Old Downtown Soldiers Grove is looking spiffy and ready for summer fun!

There will be no Friday events in the park this year, and there will also be no carnival. On Saturday and Sunday, there will be bouncy houses in the park for the little ones to enjoy.

Driftless Brewery, an exciting new Soldiers Grove business, will have its usual tap room hours of Friday, 3-9 p.m., and Saturday, 1-9 p.m. Stop by to try one of their delicious brews and check out the recently completed taproom.

So, this year at Dairy Days, have a ball, and remember to celebrate dairy and celebrate community. Of course, the focal point of the celebration, the milk and cheese, will be available throughout the event, in abundance and for free. 

Saturday pulling

Midwest Pulling Sled will help to kickoff the tractor pull season locally on Saturday, with a Two Hook Show; registration will be at 10 a.m. with pulling beginning around noon. 

The classes for the two-hook pull will be as follows: Antique 3 mph (4000,4500,5000,5500,6000,6500); Farm/local antique 4mph 18.4x38 tires (6500,7000); Improved Antique 4mph (5000,5500,6000); Super Antique 6mph (5500,6000); Open 10mph 18.4 tires (6000,6200); Farm 414 ci limit 5mph 18.4 tires (9000,9500); Light Open farm 12mph 18.4 tires (9000,9500); and Heavy Open Farm 12mph 20.8 tires (11500,12000,12500).

Saturday sports

Saturday sporting events will include a Volleyball Tournament.

To enter a team in the Volleyball Tournament, call Doug Heisz at 608-735-4179 or 608-391-0065 with questions. Volleyball games will take place on Saturday only, and play will kick off at 9 a.m. and go all day.

The Co-Ed and Men’s Softball Tournaments have been cancelled due to lack of teams entering.

On Saturday, there will be a horseshoe tournament put on by the Kickapoo Ringers. Because repair of the horseshoe pits in Soldiers Grove is not complete, the event will be held at the Log Cabin Park in Gays Mills. Registration will start at 10:30 a.m., and play will commence at 11 a.m. For more information, contact Jim Maybee, 735-4599.

The Soldiers Grove Library will host a book sale on Saturday, June 15, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., during Dairy Days. the sale will be held at the library.

Good food

As always, the Soldiers Grove Lions Club will offer their fantastic chicken barbeque both days starting at 11 a.m.. So take a break from cooking dinner, bring the whole family down, eat some good food and enjoy the fun. The Soldiers Grove Lionesses will offer their traditional ice cream as well.

Sunday is Dairy Day

As always, the big excitement on Sunday at Dairy Days will be the Dairy Days Parade. The parade is currently looking for entries. There will be cash prizes awarded for Best Dairy Theme Float, Best Youth Float, and Best Commercial Float. The parade starts at 1 p.m. with registration at 11:30 a.m. by the North Crawford Bus Barn, at the corner of Pine and Third Streets. There is no entry fee. 

To pre-register, contact Rosie McCullick at 608-629-5095 or Kris McCormick at 608-606-4335. 

Following the parade, there will be the Kindschi Pedal Tractor Pull free for kids ages 4-12. 

Raffle tickets are also available at local businesses and from Lions Club members. First prize is $1,000 provided by the Soldiers Grove Lions Club, second and third prizes are $500 and fourth through seventh pirzes are $250 each. There will also be other prizes up for grabs.