Popcorn Day

popcorn day parade

Hamburg, IA, the home of Popcorn Day for 55 years! So many memories run thru my mind of Popcorn Day in Hamburg. It’s the big event of the year in this small rural community and will hopefully continue for another 50 plus years. These are some of the sights and sounds of Popcorn Day ~
The smell of popcorn in the air and the sight of the American flag flying high over Main Street as everyone crowds into our small town, trying to find a piece of shade to watch the Grand Parade.
School buses parked up and down the side streets bring marching bands from all the neighboring schools and the Flea Market stands at City Park where many arrived the night before to set up their wares.
Fire trucks and rescue squads from miles around blowing their horns and sirens as they move slowly down the street.
Politicians throwing candy to the kids as they walk along beside the big floats decorated for the Grand Parade.
High School Popcorn Day queen candidates looking beautiful in their long gowns and the adorable Little Miss Popcorn Day girls all dressed up in their best, hoping they are the one with the most money in their can at Stoner Drug to earn this year’s title and crown.
Family and friends home for the activities talking nonstop on the sidewalks as they catch up on the latest news.
Classmates we haven’t seen for at least a year or longer back in town for their reunions or the big Alumni Banquet in the evening recalling the “glory days” of their youth at Hamburg High.
Tractor Cruise with the red and green all waxed up and representing our farming heritage here in southwest Iowa.
Slow pitch softball tournament at Clayton Field for the baseball fans among us.
Car Show at the post office parking lot with some real beauties on display where for the second year, the Chad Dovel Memorial Trophy in memory of our son will be awarded to the Grand Champion. How honored and grateful our family is for Chad to be remembered in this way in his home town!
Chain Saw Sculptures to entertain, and the Pancake Man to feed the crowds. Performances at the Colonial Theater or the Dusty Blue Band at City Park after the parades followed by Karaoke and the Teen Dance on Main Street or the Velvet Crush at the Blue Moon in the evening bring plenty of music to the day.
For the runners, there’s the Flash Dash 5K at 8 p.m., plus many more fun activities and things to see at this year’s Popcorn Day.
What a pleasant feeling it is to be part of a community that carries on this wonderful tradition each year! Rubbing elbows with the people we live near, but so often don’t take the time to visit in the current technological age. The warm clasp of a handshake or a big hug cannot be felt thru cell phones or Face Book, and we all need this physical contact in the world we live in, more now than ever before.
So, let’s stand proud when we hear the National Anthem sung at this year’s parade, with our hat’s off and our hands over our hearts. As the American Legion fires their guns in honor of those who have paid the ultimate price, let’s remember them and pray that God will bless and protect our way of life here on the back roads of America. Have a great Popcorn Day!

— Debbie Dovel

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