Fullerton marks 125th this weekendOne small prairie town renowned for its grain elevator and barbecue ribs will be celebrating a milestone anniversary with a smorgasbord of events this weekend.
By: By Ben Rodgers, The Jamestown Sun, The Jamestown Sun
One small prairie town renowned for its grain elevator and barbecue ribs will be celebrating a milestone anniversary with a smorgasbord of events this weekend.
Fullerton, N.D., will turn 125 years old this weekend. This town of about 70 residents in south Dickey County is expecting close to 500 visitors for the weekend festivities.
“We are a small community, but we’ve got a lot to be proud of,” said Layna Gramlow, secretary of the 125th committee. “We’re a little town with a great heart.”
The theme for the celebration is “Celebrating our Legacy … 125 years.”
“It’s a huge collection of people that have devoted their time and efforts into celebrating our legacy, and that’s been our whole theme,” Gramlow said.
There was a time when covered wagons were part of life on the prairie as settlers moved into small communities like Fullerton. This weekend, more than 150 people end their 79-mile Fort Seward Wagon Train journey on Friday evening in Fullerton. There will be a town supper at 5 p.m. in the park catered by the Ranch House, known by many for its ribs.
The next morning after the kiddie parade at 9:30 the wagon riders will also be featured in a parade.
“As a horse lover I always enjoy the parade, and Fort Seward is always a good pull,” Gramlow said.
Later on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. in the park is the All Community Banquet, but that event is sold out.
Gramlow said many people have moved to Fullerton and embraced it as their home, even though they did not grow up there. Hence the reason for a community banquet, not a school reunion.
All three days there will be arts and crafts vendors, food vendors, a quilt show and the souvenir shop will be open.
Events start Friday with the arrival of the wagon train at 4 p.m. with supper at 5 p.m. and a Kid Hollywood street dance at 9 p.m.
Saturday starts with an early breakfast from 7:30 to 9 a.m. with an apple pie contest right after.
At noon when the parade winds down, a horseshoe tournament starts up south of St. Patrick’s Church. Other lawn games will be available.
For the children, inflatable games start at noon Saturday, and unlimited-use passes cost $5 per day.
One event that will be bittersweet for Gramlow is the threshing show demonstration at 1 p.m. Saturday. It will likely be the last-ever threshing show in Fullerton because of a lack of interest. Other demonstrations include a sawmill/shingle mill and blacksmith.
A raffle with many items, including apple pies, starts at 3:45 p.m. Proceeds from the apple pies sold will benefit the Carroll House Fund, dedicated to keeping the historic house — now hotel — open for guests.
At 7 p.m. a choir concert will take place in the park.
“We’ll be singing our way through the decades and ending with a finale that brings tears to your eyes, there’s no other way to say it,” Gramlow said.
A disc jockey will provide entertainment starting at 8 p.m. with a fireworks show at 10 p.m.
Sunday starts early with a 5K run at 7 a.m. Breakfast is served from 7:30 to 9 a.m. And at 9 a.m. an all-denominations church service will take place under the big tent in the park.
Old-time photos will be available from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and a car show will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday also.
A pickup pull starts at 2 p.m. with a weigh in at noon, and a bridal showcase that features gowns throughout the decades starts at 2 p.m.
“There’s just been a hubbub of activity and it’s all coming together. We’re looking forward to the weekend and we hope we have a good crowd and we can take care of everybody,” Gramlow said.
Fullerton is 52 miles south of Jamestown on U.S. Highway 281, just past Monango, then 8 miles east and a half mile north.
“It’s a huge effort and it will be bittersweet to have it end, but we have to celebrate 125 years,” Gramlow said.
Sun reporter Ben Rodgers can be reached at 701-952-8455 or by email at email@example.com