Currie Rocks the 4th

Shari Thomas holds her appropriately-dressed six-month old grandson, Oliver, during Currie Town & Country’s 4th of July Picnic on Sunday. Please see Page 2 for more images from Currie’s big weekend celebration. Photos / Per Peterson

Few know how to celebrate America’s birthday the way Currie and the Currie Town & Country Boosters do, and this year was no exception

By Per Peterson

It began Saturday with a record-setting street dance and ended Sunday night with yet another explosive, eye-popping fireworks display.

Once again, Currie and the Currie Town & Country Boosters proved they know how to celebrate Independence Day.

“It was huge,” said Ed Sweetman of Currie T&C. “We had the biggest dance we’ve ever had — it was unbelievable.”

Some 2,000 people gathered for the street dance Saturday night to kick off Currie’s weekend celebration. The dance is Currie T&C’s largest fundraiser of the year, but it didn’t take place in 2020 because of COVID-19.

“We knew we had to do it this year,” Sweetman said. “Some people got mad because we cancelled the dance last year, but it was the reasonable thing to do. I’m glad we did what we did. (Saturday night) was just unbelievable. You couldn’t have fallen down in the street because there was no room.”

The street dance serves as the unofficial beginning to Currie’s two-day celebration, and it didn’t disappoint this year. IV Play took the stage about 9 p.m., and residents near and far packed the streets of downtown Currie. As it turned out, it was a harbinger of things to come for Currie, its residents and everyone who was in town over the weekend.

“It was the biggest street dance we’ve ever had,” said Shari Thomas of Currie T&C. “We were able to financially recapture everything from memberships and our (charitable) gambling, but there are times when we didn’t have much money; that’s our main fundraiser.”

But the dance was just the beginning of the big weekend. One of Sunday’s highlights was Currie T&C’s annual Picnic and Membership Drive. Attendees were treated to a hot dog or burger meal, as a bean bag and sand volleyball tournament went on in the background at the park. The young ones also enjoyed inflatable bounce houses during the picnic, and after, many made their way down 1st St. to the bridge over the Des Moines River for the Duck Race.

Like the street dance, the Duck Race was cancelled in 2020. And, like the dance this year, the participation in the race was overwhelming, as 1,000 duck raffle tickets were sold. Even though the depth of the water on the river was substantially lower than in the past, the race went on, with the duck owned by Crystal Knakmuhs of Walnut Grove taking first place by a bill over the duck purchased by Tracy’s Jennifer Otto. Third place went to Ashley Doeden of Slayton. All $1,000 raised was paid out to the winners.

“I think it was awesome,” said Currie T&C board member Amy Loosbrock. “The duck raffle tickets went out really fast this year. Everybody was very eager to buy this year.”