Hammond readies for Heartland Days rush
Steve Miller has been keeping an eye on the weather since Sunday night.
"I hope the weather stays good," said the coordinator of the 2006 Hammond Heartland Days celebration. "It can kill your weekend."
Such is the focus of the organizing committee for the annual gathering, set for Thursday through Sunday, Aug. 10-13, this year. There are worries about things you have control over, and worries about things you can't do anything about.
Miller, who has been heading Heartland Days for more than 10 years, tries hard to concentrate on the things he can control.
"I'm a detail kind of person," he admits. "I do get really hyper, and I get stressed out."
The stress slowly gets wiped away once the annual celebration begins.
"I love it when I see the tent start to fill up," Miller said.
The Hammond Lion's Club is behind the huge community celebration. Members of the eight-member Heartland Days sub-committee have been working hard the past couple months to pull everything together.
"We've (the committee) pretty much been together since day one," Miller said. "Everyone is doing the same jobs they've always done, so everything flows together quite nicely."
The Heartland Days schedule isn't the same every time, however. Each year, organizers try to add a new twist or two to the annual celebration to keep things fresh.
Miller said a new Bean Bag Tournament (similar to horseshoes) and a Texas Hold 'Em tournament are two additions that promise to be popular events.
"We try to do something new," he said. "Every year, Heartland Days keeps getting bigger and bigger. For a small community, Hammond really does a good job."
In the days leading up to the weekend's celebration, Lion's Club members have been traveling throughout the area putting up promotional posters and placing ads in area newspapers.
Their goal is to get as many area residents to attend Heartland Days as possible. They've gotten their fair share of interest since the celebration combined with United Fire's annual car show to put on a joint gathering.
"We all try to work together," he said. "I don't think people realize how much work a celebration can be. Our community does a good job with it."
The hard work appeared to be paying off as of Monday. Miller had already fielded 10 phone calls about Heartland Days before noon, with the expectation that more calls would come.
Now, if only the weather will cooperate.
Some of the weekend events are as follows:
4 p.m.: Free Appreciation Dinner, sponsored by First National Bank in Hammond.
5:15 p.m.: Pie and Ice Cream Social.
6 p.m.: Wisconsin State Kids' Pedal Tractor Pull, open to ages 1-12.
6 p.m.: Baby Show at the Hammond Community Library, for ages 0-12 months.
6:30 p.m.: Panther Pant 5K Run/Walk at the Middle School.
7 p.m.: Music by John and Dave with Trigger Happy at the Park.
Area garage sales throughout the community.
7 p.m.: Hammond royalty pageant at the High School.
7 p.m.: Live music at the park with Point Blank and The Dweebs.
7 p.m.: Farm Stock Tractor Pull on Fithian Street.
8 a.m.: The 19th Annual United Fire & Rescue Car Show and Swap Meet, on the street.
8 a.m.: Best Ball Golf Tournament, Hammond Golf Course.
9 a.m.-3 p.m.: Craft Fair on the street.
9 a.m.: Hammond Library Book Sale.
Noon: Texas Hold 'Em card tournament under the tent.
1 p.m.: Gopher State Garden Tractor Pull at the Village Park.
2 p.m.: Bean Bag Tournament, partners tourney, at the Village Park.
Dusk: Grand Fireworks display.
7:30 p.m.: Live music with Jamm Jarr and Jonah and the Whales.
12:30 p.m.: Grand parade.
1:30 p.m.: Auggie the Clown Show.
2 p.m.: Polka Busters live music show.
3 p.m.: 3-Person Scramble Golf Tournament, Pheasant Hills Golf Course.
3 p.m.: Live music featuring Boondoggle.
For more information about softball tournaments, volleyball tournament and other events, see the advertisement in this week's Scotsman or the News.