By Byron Higgin, Publisher
The melody came sweeping toward me like an old friend who’d come to visit.
It led me inside a tent at the Lyon County Fair. I kept walking until I was standing in front of a group called, “Route 68 Big Band.”
The tune, “Woodchopper’s Ball” by Woody Herman wailed from the horn section and as the lady singer dropped the words on me and I found my subconciousness suddenly awakened.
Suddenly I was no longer in a big tent in Marshall, Minnesota at the 2009 Lyon County Fair.
I was sitting in my mother and father’s living room, watching them dance together, a smile as big as all outdoors on their faces.
They twirled and spinned and every once in a while dad would land a soft kiss on my mother’s face.
I was only a young teenager at the time and while somewhat embarrased by my parent’s candid nature in front of their children, I also felt very good about being part of such a wonderful, happy, fun-loving family.
My sisters Beth and Caryn were younger than I and they’d get up and dance to the tunes as well. A little prodding even got me to dance along.
We danced and we laughed and we enjoyed each other because the music kept right on coming.
It may have been the Lawrence Welk Champagne bubbles or the sounds of “Woodchopper’s Ball” by Woody Herman that got us going.
And I recall Mitch Miller urging us to all, “Follow the bouncing ball,” as we sang along with his orchestra.
Those were happy times.
Suddenly I was reminded I was under the tent in 2009 as the music ended and I came back to reality.
But the sounds of the “Route 68 Big Band” didn’t quit. They came on with Glenn Miller’s sound of String of Pearls, and the intoxicating tune of “An Orange Colored Sky”.
When the director said it was time for a ballad, the lady singer launched into “When I Fall In Love,” ... and once again I was lost in the land of “yesteryear.”
We sat around the TV on those days in the 1960’s and we couldn’t wait for the Ed Sullivan show to come on TV and show us the latest magical acts or the sounds of the latest music.
We laughed at Lucille Ball during The Lucy Show, thought Jack Benny was a riot and adored Red Skelton.
All this, and more passed through my mind as I listened to the music of the Route 68 Big Band on this warm afternoon in Marshall, Minnesota.
For a moment I looked over to the right side of the tent and there was a lady, who appeared to be a grandmother, with two young ladies that looked like granddaughters, and all three were sitting together, pounding their hands together as they enjoyed the music.
I could tell the grandmother person was also lost in the “sounds of yesterday.”
She was enjoying it along with the two younger ladies.
As it ended, I felt sad to leave this momentary”blast into the past.”
I began to wonder what happened to that wonderful music and to families who loved to spend time together to laugh and dance and maybe even eat dinner together.
No doubt those were simpler times.
In my life, they were happy times that I don’t ever want to forget. Every time I need a little pick-me-up, the thought of mom and dad dancing together, laughing and twirling, makes it a much better day.
Thank you Route 68 Big Band!
A remarkable young lady
Young people can surprise you.
I was knocked off by a very surprising young lady named Brittany Moorse of Minneota.
This young lady not only has done very well with her cattle at the fairs and through her 4-H experience, but she hasn’t been content to show them, then wander off into the world and try something else.
She’s basically used her experience in the dairy industry to launch her own career.
She owns her own cattle, buys, sells, plans every detail herself and in the process, promotes the dairy industry with every breath.
“It was a great honor to receive all the great awards I did,” she said.
It was special to her to get “overall champion,” with an animal. I choose which father I wanted her to have and I made all the decisions with her and it’s really an honor and it’s special to me. Her daughter’s here and her granddaughter’s here,” Moorse said of her line of special show animals.
Her story of how her dairy cow “Fairy” was born at the fair and will return there to show her stuff is remarkable.
It’s so great to see young people who put all they have into something.
Way to go Brittany.
Laugh a little:
Three guys went on a game show to see who was smartest.
“Complete the sentence and SPELL the word,” said the host. “Old McDonald had a ....” the host said.
The first guy said, “RANCH ... r a n c h,”. The other two laughed and the second guy said, “Pasture ... p a s t u r e.”
The third guy laughed and said, that’s easy ... Old McDonald had a FARM . . . E I E I O.
Thought for the Week: As my old pappy used to say, “I’ve lost a lot of things in my life. But when you lose your mind, well, all is lost. So hang onto it.”