On Friday, Aug. 16, ElderCircle will host the annual “Senior Day at the Fair” at the Itasca County Fair which includes an expo, live music, lunch and awards ceremony. The public is welcome to the Resources Expo beginning at 10 a.m. outside of the Trailhead Building where several area organizations and agencies will be on-hand to answer questions and offer resources about the services they provide for aging community members. Sponsored by the VFW, Eagles Auxiliary, Lake Country Power, Super One Foods, Tike’s Fresh Meats, American Legion and United Methodist Church of Grand Rapids, a no-cost lunch will be served by Itasca County public officials and ElderCircle Staff to all community members 60 and older beginning at 11:30 a.m.

Senior Day at the Fair will also feature live music by the popular “Second Wind Harmonica Band” beginning at 11 a.m., sponsored by the Itasca County Fair Board. An awards ceremony at 12:30 p.m. will honor seven 2019 Itasca County Outstanding Senior Volunteers nominees and two award recipients. 

Based on nominations submitted by the public, 2019 Outstanding Senior Volunteer awards will be presented at 12:30 p.m. to two older adults (one male and one female) who are age 70 or older, and have volunteered in various ways throughout their community. This year’s nominees include Will Backes, Marn Flicker, Jerry Tinquist, Bernie Backes, Betty Denzel, Susan Hayes and Sue Koprowski who will be honored and the county awards presented.  County nominations are collected by ElderCircle and sent to the Arrowhead Area Agency on Aging in Duluth for review, and selection is based on criteria set by the Minnesota State Fair. The nominations of the Itasca County award recipients, Susan Hayes and Marn Flicker, have been forwarded to the Minnesota State Fair, where one male and one female are selected from all participating Minnesota counties, and awarded at the State Fair on Thursday, Aug. 29. 

Past Minnesota State award recipients from Itasca County have been Judy Peterson from Grand Rapids in 2018, Gwenn Smith from Deer River in 2017, Lloyd Adams from Wabana in 2013 and Joan Oja from Pengilly in 2011, and First Runners-Up Jerry Kleven from Grand Rapids in 2018, Chuck Hilgedick from Bigfork in 2017, Jim Sommers from Cohasset in 2015 and Lorraine Linser from Grand Rapids in 2008. 

Previously known as the “Old Settlers Bean Feed” for many years, Senior Day at the Fair is a great opportunity to honor Itasca County’s senior volunteers and learn more about Itasca County aging services. Senior Day at the Fair has been celebrating the accomplishments of our community leaders for more than 30 years.  Transportation by bus from the Active Living Center at the YMCA to both the Itasca County Fair and to the State Fair is available by prior arrangement by calling the Y at 218-327-1161.  For more information or questions about Senior Day at the Fair, contact ElderCircle at 218-999-9233.

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