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Bicycle parade, car show relocation among changes to annual festival

Bicycle parade, car show relocation among changes to annual festival

September 12th, 2018 by Michelle Brooks in Local News

The crowd fills the street Sept. 16, 2017 at the 27th annual Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival. (Democrat photo / David A. Wilson)

The 28th Annual Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival will look a little different this year.

The car show will criss-cross the intersection at the post office and historical society. A vacant lot sits where the Eagles Club was, and a bicycle parade will line the block between the Moniteau County Courthouse and Sweet Chipotle.

Every year, the California Area Chamber of Commerce looks for something new or different to keep the festival interesting, said long-time festival chairman Brad Baer.

Moving the car show from the Moniteau County Fairgrounds should create better opportunities for the festival and show to share visitors, he said.

The south stage has been relocated to the 100 block of Madison Street, in front of the Bobby Medlin CPA office. And some booths, which had set up on High Street in past years, will be relocated.

But, the parade route will remain the same and a judging category for horses has been added. The car show road will be blocked off after the parade.

Also new this year, the First Baptist Church Mommy and Me tent for private child care will be available. Several other churches are participating this year.

Although the Eagles building is no more, the club is still going. They will manage the barbecue contest and washerboard tournament again, as well as serve their pork steaks. And Mid-Missouri band Prairie Moon will perform for the afternoon.

"We appreciate their help," Baer said. "They're a good organization."

The chamber donated the entry fees back to the local civic club and hopes that visitors will be generous with donations to help the Eagles rebuild a new home.

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And for youth, the bicycle parade has been added. It's not a race. But youth ages 3-and-up are encouraged to decorate their bicycles or tricycles and wear costumes for this "happy-go-lucky" event at 2 p.m. on the east side of the courthouse.

The Moniteau County Courthouse turns 150 this year, and so it is the logo for this year's T-shirts and ornaments, which will be available at the chamber's information booth. Three-stories of the historic courthouse will be open for self-guided tours 1-3 p.m.

"It's pretty special, we still use the same courthouse for 150 years," Baer said. We don't have a river or Interstate or college or state offices — but what we have is pretty special."

Other events include:

7:30 a.m. — 5K walk/run at Village Green

7-9 a.m. — Kiwanis Club ham breakfast on Main Street

8 a.m. — Car Show registration begins

9:30 a.m. — parade along Oak Street

10 a.m. — Moniteau County Historical Society opens

10 a.m. — Vendors open

10 a.m. — Kids Corner includes Diaper Derby at 11 a.m., carnival games, FFA petting zoo and Runge Nature Center display

10 a.m. — VFW service officers available

11 a.m. — Flag-raising ceremony at courthouse

11:15 a.m. — Performances on the south stage will include the California Community Band

11:15 a.m. — Performance on the north stage will include CHS band and flags, CHS dance squad, CMS and CHS cheerleaders, CHS Sounds of Joy and CMS Pinto Express

11:30 a.m. — 74-feet-long Monster sandwich served

2 p.m. — Bicycle parade

7 p.m. — Firefighters Figure 8 at fairgrounds