?Everyone had a great weekend’

Lead singer Casey Donahew and his band drew an estimated 2,000-plus people to their featured concert Saturday night in Central Park. Another popular draw was Hells Bells, an AC/DC tribute band that performed Friday night. Patty Decker / Free Press

Organizers were pleased with the overall attendance and events at this year?s 19th annual Chingawassa Friday, Saturday and Sunday in Marion.

Although an unofficial tally, one committee member said he thought there were nearly 2,000 spectators at Saturday night?s Casey Donahew Band concert.

Terry Jones, in charge of food vendors, said those preparing hot dogs and other tempting dishes did well.

?The barbecue vendor was new this year and a complete home run,? he said. ?He ran out of meat and had to go to Carlson?s Grocery to purchase several hundred dollars more.?

Even with the extra meat, Jones said the owner still ran out earlier than he wanted to.

?Everyone had a great weekend,? Jones added.

Jones also talked about the Casey Donahew Band and its lead singer, Casey.

?Shortly after the band?s arrival, they asked if they could put a team together for the 3-on-3 basketball tournament,? he said.

Because the tournament had already started and there weren?t any slots left, the band decided to play some pickup games after the tournament ended.

?While getting around town, the band noticed some Marion High School baseball hats that they liked so they asked if they could get some,? he said.

Brad Putter celebrates when wife Patty reveals a correct answer during the Newlywed Game Friday. Janae Rempel / Free PressLuckily, the baseball team had a couple of extra hats.

?Casey and other members of the band wore the caps all day on Saturday, and wore them during the concert, too.?

During the concert, fiddle player Josh Moore handed his Marion cap to a young fan, Cheyenne Sawyer, sitting on her mother?s shoulders through most of the event.

The Friday night bands, Road 23 and Hells Bells, also received rave reviews.

Winners for a majority of Saturday afternoon events were unavailable as of press time Monday, but some information was received.

The Dinky Duck fundraiser, sponsored by St. Luke Hospital, will see its proceeds going toward the purchase of joint molds for the therapy department, said Roger Schroeder, at St. Luke Hospital.

?The remainder of the proceeds is going towards the proposed Living Center renovation.

In the tug-of-war competition, Hett Construction took first place defeating Carlson?s Grocery, Prairieland Partners and the Marion County Road and Bridge Department.

Elaine Ewert (left) won first place in the Rock, Paper, Scissors competition in Central Park.  Patty Decker / Free PressElaine Ewert of Marion won the Rock/Paper/Scissors event, sponsored by Tampa State Bank. One spokesperson said nearly 70 people were vying for the first place prize of $50.

The Rhino sculpting contest saw two winners in two different age categories.

In the younger category, Lily Thouvenall, 12, of Marion was first with $15, and Jaden Slifer, 12, also of Marion was the $10 winner.

In the adult age group, a mother and daughter were the first and second place winners. The daughter, Jill Wagner of Lawrence, came in first and her mom, Alma Wagner of Axtell, was second.

The Wagners said they are related to Rick Branson, who was the pastor at Eastmoor Baptist Church about five years ago.

In the bed races, four teams competed with Carlsons Grocery taking first place and the teachers of Marion Middle School winning best-dressed.

More results will appear in the June 17 edition.

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