The Sgt. John Rice VFW Post 6316 and Blaine’s Beyond the Yellow Ribbon committee hosted an event Oct. 13 that drew well over 700 people, an event organizer estimated.
Although the VFW has hosted an Octoberfest event in the past, this year’s festival was recognized as the first major event for veterans since Blaine became a Yellow Ribbon community in May.
The event featured a job fair for the first time. Dave Regel, chairperson of the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon steering committee, said 19 companies came to the event to interview veterans and offer jobs.
According to Regel, the VFW was full of people for the evening pig roast and concert by The Delcounts. He estimated that well over 400 people were there for the pig roast, and over 700 people were there by the time the concert started.
Flowerama of Blaine handed out free yellow carnations to everyone who came to the event, Regel said.
“For everything we did, it turned out pretty well,” he said.
Regel said the weather was beautiful in the morning when over 40 volunteers came to help set up. However, it began to drizzle before noon and kept raining until the late afternoon.
This probably kept some people away, he said.
Regel had hoped more veterans would have come to the job fair. He estimated that 20 to 24 people stopped by one or more of the 19 company booths. He heard one vendor tell him they had 17 openings to fill.
Regel said Blaine’s Beyond the Yellow Ribbon committee may host another job fair next spring. Some of the major companies at the job fair were Target, Sam’s Club and Kraus Anderson, according to Regel.
Eric Hagen is at