Saturday, September 8, 2007

Dycusburg News: Sept. 6, 2007

Dycusburg Day Festival was a huge success on Saturday. Last Monday, plans for a welcome home potluck dinner for Chase Matthews were announced.

Dycusburg Day was to consist of one fire truck and a float for the parade, one flea market table and a jumping play area for the kids, one food wagon and a band for Saturday night. That was good, but the ladies of the community decided to make it better – they pulled together Dycusburg Day, which mistakenly reported has been around for several years. Paul and Faye Stinnett and Randy and Glenda Peek – former owners of the Dycusburg Grocery have hosted Dycusburg Day several times in the past. It was a quiet affair back then, as most of the townsfolk didn’t like the hoopla that goes on with such to-dos. This year, the ladies of the community led by Faye Stinnett and Barbara Ethridge pulled together and started making things happen.

Dycusburg Day became a Welcome Home Celebration for Chase Matthews. The parade was held in Chase’s honor and began at 11 a.m., when Randy Rushing led the parade with the rescue truck, no sirens, but plenty of lights. Next came Mike Cherry, State Representative in his classic red Mustang, Van Knight in his antique “Ug-a” (the sound of his horn) car. A float by Gary and Sue Bailey representing the Dycusburg Baptist Church showing small scale tractors ridden by their grandsons, Ian Aldridge and Brian McCoy II. Also on their float were Shawna and Christian McCoy, Payton Bailey and Angie, Ashlyn and Kelsie Webster. Then along came the “Oldies” float complete with Ms. Geneva’s Dycus’ hat (she would be so proud of Dycusburg). The oldies float was pulled by Rudy Matthews, and riding on the float were Wanda Kinnis, Sheila Wadsworth (wearing Ms. Geneva’s hat) and Wes Oakley. Jamie followed in his pretty yellow Camaro, and bringing up the rear was the kids’ float – a tradition for the past three years.

Debbie Holsapple and Star Mahns spent endless hours making paper tissue flowers to decorate the trailer and bales of straw to ensure the kids in town have a float to ride on in the parade. Josh Mahns pulled the float and riding was Star and Jacob Mahns, Billy and Alina and Judge Bill Cunningham. A good crowd gathered to watch the parade, collect candy along the parade route and wave at the participants. Certificates were presented to everyone participating in the parade. At noon, the Baptist church fellowship hall filled up as Chase rolled into town on his new bright yellow four wheeler. Chase was welcomed by many friends, comrades and family. Chase was presented a Kentucky Colonel award and had the picnic pavilion, walking trail and boat ramp named the "Chase Matthews Recreational Area" in his honor. September 1 has been declared Chase Matthews Day in Crittenden County. Greg West, Magistrate for Crittenden County made the presentations.

Chase isn’t big on all the attention, but he truly deserves it. Saturday was Chase’s 23rd birthday. Following the dinner, Willie Peek entertained the crowd with gospel singing. The rest of the day was filled with game for the kids, washer tournaments, a jumping play area for the kids, flea market tables, raffles to raise money for next year's festival and a lot of visiting with old friends and family.

As darkness fell, Soul Shine, a tradition at Dycusburg Day, entertained the crowd. The music was great as always – I still haven’t figured out why these guys aren’t playing professionally.

There was a big crowd complete with dancing in the streets. The band played until late in the night and the jumping play area stayed open for the kids.

Everyone had a good time. We are excited about next year’s festival and have already started working on it.

Thank you to everyone who helped in making the day a success. A special thank you to Eddyville Food Giant, Conrad’s, Hancock’s in Princeton and Fredonia Store for donating drinks for the dinner. Thank you to the ladies of the community who cooked BBQ, casseroles, vegetables, breads, cakes, pies and banana pudding for the celebration. If anyone in town left hungry on Saturday, it was their own fault. We, and I speak for the community, are so proud of Chase. He has demonstrated remarkable courage and pure determination. We are so proud of him and all our other veterans who have served in the Armed Forces. I hope each of you know we love you and appreciate all you did. We honor you all. We are “Dycusburg proud” and that’s enough said.
Tina Cochrum

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