Friday, November 14, 2014

Weekend in Winterset, Nov. 14 - 16

One Sunday in November of 2002, I went to second service at St. Paul Lutheran Church by myself, with the intention of staying just long enough to sing with the choir and then leaving to get an early spot in line at the Optimist Club Turkey Dinner. Okay -- perhaps my priorities were a little out of whack (lol!), but Alan was already at the dinner helping to set up, and I was anxious to join him. I saw a woman sitting alone in a back pew, and I sat down next to her. I didn't know her very well, but I knew that she had recently lost her husband, and I hadn't seen her around church for awhile. We chatted for a few minutes before the service, and then she pointed at my name in the day's worship servers listed in the bulletin and said, "This is you, right?" I had no idea I was supposed to be the lector that day. As it turned out, sitting down next to her saved me from an embarrassing situation in which I would have sung with the choir and then proceeded to walk straight down the aisle and out the door, at the precise moment when all eyes were on me, expecting me to go to the pulpit to do the first and second readings. Also, she informed me later that if I had not sat down and struck up a conversation with her, she probably would have left before the service started. It was her first time back to church since her husband had died, and being there was almost more than she could bear.

I'm not sure what that has to do with anything, except that I always think about that brief exchange when it comes time for the Optimist Club Turkey Dinner, which is happening this coming Sunday, and I think there's a lesson in there somewhere about giving, receiving, and making things better for one another with the small things we do every day. Supporting events like the turkey dinner is really just a wonderfully organized (and delicious) way for one individual to help another, in this case our youth, and there's power in numbers.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. There are other things happening this weekend before the big turkey feast. Have I mentioned I can't wait for that?

This evening from 5:00 to 7:00, Scot Clark and Associates at Farm Bureau, 1303 N. 6th Ave., are celebrating the move to their new building with a Chamber-sponsored "Business After Hours" event and ribbon cutting. Congrats to them on their beautiful new space!

Heartland Fiber is also celebrating the move to their new location with a Grand Re-Opening that kicked off last night. They're open today (Friday) from 10:00 to 5:00, Saturday from 10:00 to 4:00, and Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00. Stop by to see "phase one" of their renovation, and enjoy refreshments, door prizes, demonstrations, wine tastings, and more. You can also sign up for the daily drawing for beginner crochet or knitting lessons for yourself and a friend.

Heartland Fiber is now at 112 N. 1st Street, on the west side of the square.

Also starting at 5:00 this evening, our neighbors at the United Methodist Church in Peru are having their own traditional turkey dinner for a freewill offering, and everyone is welcome. I believe the address is 301 Brown Street.

At 7:00 tonight at Miller Auditorium, Amy's School of Dance is hosting a Dancers Against Cancer event, helping to fight childhood cancers with a silent auction and freewill donation for their performance. 100% of the proceeds will go to Blank Children's Hospital Oncology Department.

On Saturday morning, the Winterset PTO will start its 2014 Fall Crop scrapbooking event at 9:00 a.m. in the WHS cafeteria. Space is limited, and I don't know how many spots they have left. If you are interested in finding out, contact Crystal Venhaus at 515-689-0041, or email You can also find information about the event in the Winterset Schools Electronic Backpack.

Also at 9:00 on Saturday, there's another opportunity to be creative at a Nuno Felting class at the Madhaus Gallery studio. Contact Robin Paul at or 515-707-4309 for more information.

From 10:00 to 4:00 on Saturday there's a Holiday Open House at a new business just off the square, Forget Me Not Floral & Gifts. They are at 112 E. Court Ave.

From 11:00 to 1:00, Farmers & Merchants State Bank is hosting a skating party for their Money Tree Kids at the Sk8n Station, 1204 W. Summit Street. Contact Stephanie Gerleman for more information about that, and if you're interested in skating at another time, the rink is also open from 7:00 to 10:00 on Friday and Saturday nights.

On Saturday afternoon, The Winterset Stage will present a 3:00 p.m. performance of The Story of the Orphan Train with Pippa White, also sponsored by Farmers & Merchants State Bank. This is the true story of Boston and New York in the 1850s, both of which had a large population of homeless children, and how the Orphan Train came to be. Tickets are $5.00 and available at

And on Saturday evening, there is a one-time showing of "Transformers, Age of Extinction" (PG-13) at the Iowa Theater at 7:00 p.m., for a freewill offering.

That's about all for local events this weekend, but if you need something else to do, check out the Junk Jubilee Jingles festival at the 4-H Building on the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines. A couple of our local vendors will be there, including Angel Wings & CT and Old Parts - New Hearts.

Looking ahead just a bit, here are a few items to note.

The hospital gift shop, The Gift Box, is hosting a Masquerade Jewelry sale on Tuesday, the 18th, from 10:00 to 4:00 at the Chesnut Building.

The Covered Bridge Quilters will have their monthly meeting on Monday, the 17th at 6:30 p.m. at the Madison County Historical Complex with a program of "Indonesian Batik: The Old is New Again." And on Thursday, the 20th, the Madison County ISU Extension is hosting a program for those who are interested in retiring in the next ten years or so: "Writing Your Retirement Paycheck." This will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Extension Office, 117 N. John Wayne Drive. There is a $20.00 fee, and registration is required by TODAY (November 14th). Call 462-1001 for more information.

Finally, here is is an example of one organization helping out another for the betterment of our community. In the words of Linda Smith, "With the Winterset Library under destruction, the Friends of the Library considered not holding their Library Lights display and silent auction this year, but Jared McDonald, Madison County Historical Museum Manager, offered the Friends a location on the museum grounds. Although the museum lounge was booked, he is providing the quaint setting of Zion Church, which should make this Library Lights event very special. His generosity assures that the Friends won't miss out on this fundraising event that allows them to make additions to the library's collection." I love it! The Library Lights part of the Holiday Hop actually begins this Wednesday, collecting trees/donations from noon to 7:00. The viewing and silent auction will be at Zion Church on Thursday from noon to 7:00, Friday from noon to 5:00, and Saturday from 10:30 to 1:00, during the Holiday Hop. More information on that in my next post.

Thank you for reading the Winterset Citizen, and if you enjoyed the "Welcome to WHS" video that was included in my last post, check out Lewayne White's WHS Video Time Capsule channel on YouTube for more. He is currently building a collection of old videos there, and if anyone has old tapes of Winterset school or community events that you'd like to have converted to upload, you can contact him at He would appreciate hearing from you. Have a great weekend in Winterset!