St. Francis celebrates Pioneer Days

It wasn’t the best weather St. Francis’ annual Pioneer Days festival has ever seen, but the rain held off for Saturday’s grand parade and there were nothing but smiles on the faces of the children who turned out along Bridge Street to admire the stream of fire engines and floats.

Pioneer Days kicked off the afternoon of June 7 with carnival rides, root beer floats, a talent contest, karaoke and live music by the Killer Hayseeds.

The fun continued Saturday with breakfast, a 5K run/walk, a petting zoo, the grand parade, bingo, a turtle race, bed race, horseshoe tournaments, movies in the park and more.

Saturday afternoon, Sarah Roppe and Sarah Farrier were crowned the new Miss St. Francis Ambassadors. Other candidates included Katie Cederberg, sponsored by Beef O’Bradys; Ariel Orr, sponsored by S.C. Cabinets; and Kelsey Voss, sponsored by Village Bank of St. Francis. Farrier and Roppe were sponsored by Temperature Specialist and Hunters Inn, respectively.

Also crowned Saturday were the two new Little Misses, Natalie Gavit and Brooke Reintjes. Other candidates for Little Miss were Jasmine Dahl, sponsored by St. Francis True Value Hardware; Luci Dorumsgaard, sponsored by NTM, Inc.; Annelise Hulst, sponsored by Highland Money Management; and Mackenzie Osowski, sponsored by Advanced Automotive Care. Gavit and Reintjes were sponsored by Beef O’Bradys and Opp Family Chiropractic, respectively.

The celebration continued into Sunday with the talent contest finals, a garden tractor pull, free kids’ games and a drawing of Pioneer Days button winners.

Miss St. Francis Ambassadors 2012–2013 Jaydin Guldenaar and Caitlin Funder, along with Little Misses Lizzie Koch and Winter Schuldt, wave from their float as they make their final appearance as the city’s current royalty at the Pioneer Days grand parade June 8.Photos by Karin Craig This antique fire truck was a fitting part of the St. Francis Pioneer Days parade June 8, especially since the theme of this year’s event was a celebration of the St. Francis Fire Department’s 50th anniversary. When St. Francis first started its fire department, it actually contracted with Anoka for fire protection services, because the city did not yet have all of the equipment it needed to be an independent fire department. The St. Francis High School dance team provided an energetic and impressive performance for parade spectators Saturday. This canine firefighter mascot delighted the many children lined along Bridge Street in St. Francis as he waved out of a fire truck window at the annual Pioneer Days parade Saturday. Leading the Pioneer Days Parade on June 8 were grand marshals Steve Braastad, Jerry Braastad, Don Leathers, Jim Myers and Ray Jones, all of whom were charter members of the St. Francis Fire Department in 1963. Dressed in pretty white dresses, the candidates for Little Miss St. Francis 2013-14 waved happily at the crowd from their Pioneer Days parade float. Crowned later that day were Natalie Gavit and Brooke Reintjes.
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This antique fire truck was a fitting part of the St. Francis Pioneer Days parade June 8, especially since the theme of this year’s event was a celebration of the St. Francis Fire Department’s 50th anniversary. When St. Francis first started its fire department, it actually contracted with Anoka for fire protection services, because the city did not yet have all of the equipment it needed to be an independent fire department.

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