This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Saint Augustine fall bazaar

The annual Saint Augustine Bazaar was held last Thursday. For most people who attend, it begins with a turkey dinner in the church basement.
Then people can walk over to the school where there are kids games. This little girl was having a hard time with a golf club. She would have done better at the fishing booth, but there was no fishing booth this year. The fishing booth was great for the little ones because no skill at all was required. The kids always enjoy the little prizes that are often thrown away the next day.
Many of the adults enjoy the raffles and the big wheel. For some reason people are more willing to donate to charities when it is done in a gambling form. That has been true since the beginning of the United States--in the early days of the republic, lotteries were used to fund a number of things that taxes would be used for today.
I was not going to write about the bazaar until I discovered from some old-timers that they did not remember the beginnings of this annual event. One said that before the present church was constructed (which was in 1939), the bazaar was held in the old armory, which was where the fire station is now. He recalled that in the old days live chickens and ducks were the prizes that people were playing for, or turkeys that had to be cleaned and plucked.  He said that Gehring Farms used to donate fifty pound sacks of potatoes and onions. When we first went to the bazaar, frozen turkeys were common prizes. Now food is rare (except for popcorn), and money is common.

Are there any other church festivals or dinners in the area that have as long a history as the Saint Augustine bazaar?

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