We had a relaxing few days in western Wisconsin. The Mann clan gathered in Elmwood, WI for a memorial service for Marcia, Rebecca's aunt, and there were extended family from all over the West and Midwest (and a few Eastcoasters as well). There were no formal services (Marcia died in December of liver cancer), but we did gather and eat together, and those who knew Marcia shared their memories of her. Some of us went horseback riding (neither R nor I); some of us went for long walks down dusty roads and explored cornfields; some of us went on long bike rides through the fields.
I'm not sure if this was part of the plan, but the family reunion coincided with the UFO days in Elmwood. Apparently a NUMBER Elmwoodians have spotted UFOs over the years, so every year at the end of July they put on a party to celebrate...their out of town visitors. They have tractor pulls and a pancake breakfast and a live rock n' roll band and fireworks and then on Sunday they have a very extensive parade. This is one of those events you kinda had to be there for...so I'm including a few video clips to give you a taste and a bunch of photos.
That's Downtown Elmwood bristling with anticipation for the fireworks.
This is the fields and the hills surrounding the family farm just outside of Elmwood.Greg and I having a serious conversation about...how Greg knows everyone in town or everything about horses.Sarah eating her pancakes (very slowly) at the pancake breakfast.Rebecca and I sat in the shade by a place called The Shack and watched the parade.Miss Elmwood (one of the two) drives a four-wheeler.The other Miss Elmwood, off of her float and walking amongst the people.Our favorite of the beauty pageant floats (there were probably 15 of them); note the cracked egg shell chairs and mammoth sized rooster.The largest tractor I have ever seen.Greg on one of his 18 horses. I wish I could have gotten a shot of him on the rearing horse.
This was actually taken on our drive into Elmwood on our first day in town. We got stuck behind a caravan of tractors, many with women riding on the wheel covers.
Sarah, Rebecca and I got tattooed.