Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, Feb. 26, 2001

Planning underway for revised festival in Winsted

By Patrice Salmon

A lively discussion concerning volunteer hours and division of profits took place at Wednesday's Winsted Festival Steering Committee meeting.

From the onset, committee Chairman Brad Millerbernd urged the steering committee members to "act as a member of the committee, not as a representative from an individual organization."

"We are here because we want to be involved. We are here to steer this event, not for our own agenda," said Millerbernd.

Because of the reorganization of the festival, the committee decided that this year's festival would be a two day event - Saturday, Aug. 11, and Sunday, Aug. 12.

The biggest, and most heated discussion was the debate over who would run which concessions, and how profits would be divided.

After much discussion, it was decided that the fairest way to handle the subject is having the event profits divided between the participating organizations depending upon how many hours are worked by each group. A group that works 70 hours would not receive as much of the end profits, as another group that worked 200 total hours.

The groups working the most hours would receive a pre-determined percentage of the profits, after a set amount of seed money is removed to set aside for next year's event. The percentage has not yet been determined.

Committee assignments

Committees were established to streamline the division of work necessary to have the festival.

The heads of the committees will be in charge of eliciting help with the tasks of each committee, such as supplies, set-up, workers in the booth during the event, and clean-up.

Committee members chose different work areas, based on their interest and areas of expertise.

An effort was made to pair participating members of the Martin Krueger American Legion Post 407 of Winsted, the event's founders, with new committee members so their experience and knowledge could be passed along.

Ideas about prior fundraising efforts, advertising, and things such as parade duties were discussed.

Dick Genty of the American Legion outlined the events list from previous years, detailing what days the events occurred, and what time various stands opened.

The traditional Winsted Fire Department pancake breakfast will be Sunday morning, and the parade will be Sunday afternoon.

Other items being considered are kiddie events, a car show for Sunday, two bands, ball games, and maybe, an antique boat show.


The food stand and beer tent have been traditionally located behind the Legion pub. Interest was expressed in moving some of the activities over to Mill Reserve Park.

"We're not bound by some preconceived notion of how things need to be run. We don't have to run the festival the way it was done in the past. We want to try new things, not reinvent the wheel, but we want to move toward the park," said Dale Maus.


Matt Podhradsky reported on the insurance requirements to have the event fall under the city's existing policy. The policy covers events held on city grounds.

More investigation will be done concerning alcohol liability coverage, and if special training is required for those who will sell beer.

It was made clear that if the event was insured under the City of Winsted's policy, then parts of the festival couldn't be separated and insured under the Legion's policy.

The events annual parade, which has featured more than 150 floats in previous years, will also be covered under the city's insurance.

Other business

- The resignation of Mary Ann Neumann as treasurer was accepted. Gary Rathmanner was appointed the new treasurer.

- Different types of bands (country or rock) are being considered, with perhaps rock music one day, and country music the next.

- The queens will take care of the facilities for the coronation.

- A checking account will be established at Community Bank in Winsted. $1,000 is being loaned from a committee member for the purpose of start-up capital. Gene Hausladen, representing the Winsted Watershed Lake Association, spoke of a possible donation from that organization.

- It was proposed that a reasonable rental fee be paid to the Legion for things such as roasters, electrical equipment, tables, and other items.

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