WINSTED, MN Gary and Ron Schauer are being recognized as Winsted’s 2019 grand marshals for their years of work and service in the community.
Brothers Gary and Ron were born in Watertown Hospital and have lived in Winsted ever since. They live in the house their father built, and their consistency and commitment is evident not only in their choice of residence, but also in their contributions to the community.
Both Gary and Ron have worked in and around the community all their lives; Gary working on cars for years before finishing his career at Sterner Lighting, and Ron working in manufacturing as well as bartending at the Blue Note and for local events.
The Schauers had a family history in volunteering, and Gary and Ron followed in their father’s footsteps.
“The volunteering, it just came fairly easy,” Gary said. “Back then, the Legion had the summer festival. Our dad was the treasurer, and so we helped him with that, way back.”
The Schauers continued to volunteer at the summer festival until a few years ago. From organizing to counting tickets, the Schauers gave years of service to the festival.
In addition, Gary and Ron volunteered their time at the Winsted Sportsmen’s Club and at St. John’s Church; mowing the lawn in the summer and shoveling sidewalks during the winter. Gary was treasurer of the Sportsmen’s Club for many years, organizing the annual hog roast and fundraiser raffle. Ron volunteered in various church offices, serving as an elder and teaching Sunday school, and also served on the board of education for more than 20 years.
The Schauers’ lifelong presence in Winsted is not only due to their steadfast nature.
“If we didn’t enjoy it here, we wouldn’t have stayed,” Gary said. Both brothers expressed their fondness for the town and its residents, as well as the unique sense of community that it fosters.
The Schauers are well aware of the impact volunteering has on the community.
“It helps out immensely to volunteer,” Gary said. “It shares the load, and helps to get things accomplished. It’s a necessary thing to do, and you shouldn’t be shy of doing it.”
“All you have to say is, ‘I’ll help out,’ and they’ll find you real quick,” Ron added. “All you have to do is ask, and they’ll be happy to have your help.”
The Schauers may have slowed down somewhat in the past few years, but they are still active in the community. Having stepped back from some of their volunteering, they now have the time to attend local car shows and show off their street rods. They attend as many shows as possible within about 20 miles, in cities including Silver Lake, Hutchinson, Annandale, Maple Lake, New Ulm, Howard Lake, and Lester Prairie. They have also attended the “Back to the ‘50s” car show at the state fairgrounds for the past 14 years, joining the more than 10,000 classic cars in attendance.
Gary and Ron have set a lifelong example of what it means to contribute to the community, and though they would just as soon stay out of the limelight, being chosen as grand marshals may provide recognition for their years of service.