On a bright, almost perfect pre-fall morning, the members of the Green Ridge community came out to celebrate and share in conversations and friendship at the Green Ridge Harvest Fun Fest.
The event, sponsored by the Green Ridge Chamber of Commerce is a way for the community to provided activities for the children and families who attend.
“We want to do something for the kids,” Jim Johnson, a member of the Green Ridge Chamber of Commerce said. “Originally, the Parks Board hosted the event but in 2010 the chamber took over.
“Every year since we’ve been at this there just seems to be more and more kids,” Johnson said. “I don’t know where they all come from but we appreciate all the families coming out. That’s why we do this each year.”
With a parade, tractor and car show, vendor booths and numerous children’s games and contests, the event seemed to offer something for everyone.
Longtime Green Ridge resident and Grand Marshall for the parade Alan Rohrbach said he was honored not only to be named grand marshal, but also to live in the community.
“I first moved here with my family in 1973, and we only planned to stay a few years,” Rohrbach said. “Forty plus years and we’re still here.
“We’re a small rural community where everyone knows everyone else and we take care of each other,” he added. “When I first came here some of the older members of the community were good enough to mentor me and help me, I think that’s what we all do here.”
Rohrbach’s willingness to help others is one of the reasons he was selected to be the grand marshal, Chamber of Commerce member Dana Binder said.
“Alan has done so much for the community, he taught at the school for 28 years, served as Fire Chief and is a member of our fire board, and the Pettis County Ambulance District Board and is also a member of the Pioneer Trails Regional Planning Committee,” Binder said. “No matter what the event he is willing to step in and help out.”
That was in evidence as after the parade Rohrbach took his turn behind the grill as he cooked hamburgers and hot dogs for the picnic in the park.
While many individuals were enjoying a meal, others could be found with their children at the game booths, petting goats, painting pumpkins, or even doing some early Christmas shopping at the tables that featured homemade crafts and various food products.
“I work on this on and off all summer,” 23 year resident of the town, Eileen Weyer said. “It’s just a really good day each year when we do this because you know you’ll be in good company visiting with everyone.”
Weyer and her daughter, Barbie Muths, were selling eight different jams and four types of homemade salsa as well as various crafts from their tables.
“Usually my other daughter is here, but she had to work today,” Weyer said. “We just always look forward to this.”
The proceeds from some of the booths went to support specific projects such as the effort to construct a new field for the soccer team, or to support the local Boys & Girls Club.
Many of the proceeds went to support community projects.
“Some of the funds will go to help pay for Santa’s Visit to Green Ridge in December,” Bender said. “Really anything we can do to help better the community is what we raise the funds for.”
Johnson wanted to thank the other members of the Chamber of Commerce as well as the Green Ridge High School FBLA who sponsored and ran many of the children’s games and the other volunteers who helped make day a success.
“We couldn’t do any of this without the help of all the volunteers,” he said. “But even for those who help out, it’s really a day for everyone to enjoy.”
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484