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KATIE ZERR: Welcome to our celebration

There is nothing more Americana than the celebration of the founding of this country during the Fourth of July.
We gather with family and friends to celebrate the birth of our great republic. This grand experiment based on the basic principles of the right to freedom of religion, speech, the press, and to the rule of law, has endured despite many attempts to halt the march of freedom.
The unique celebrations reflect what is special about our country and especially rural America.
Anyone who lives in Mobridge, has been here during the celebration, or who returns home for the annual event, knows Mobridge holds the quintessential rural America event.
From the three rodeo performances, the Living History, the carnival, parades, reunions and days on the lake, these events are a snapshot of what it means to celebrate our nation.
The center of our celebration is the salute to those who came to this area to tame the wild prairie, the homesteaders. These people broke the ground, corralled the range, tamed the wild beasts and produced the stock that still roams the land and populates our towns.
The rodeo, a snapshot of how these feats were accomplished, reminds us that our forefathers were tough, smart and determined to use what the earth gave them to succeed in our part of the country.
The Klein Museum’s Living History has highlighted the lives of many of the people who landed here and worked to tame our land. It is a can’t miss part of our celebration as local residents relive the stories of those whose vision and hard work created the place that we call home.
In Mobridge, the parades have once again become a showcase of Americana with floats, horses, vintage vehicles and decorated bikes. It is a slice of apple pie, topped with a double scoop of vanilla ice cream and slice of cheddar cheese!
We are lucky here to be able to celebrate on the shores of Lake Oahe. We fish, boat, tube, kayak or just relax at the campsite before hitting the town for special events. Those who don’t live here understand that this is a special opportunity that not many Americans have at their back step. We are blessed.
We also take this time to celebrate those who work hard to preserve our lifestyle on a daily basis. We tip our hats to those who serve our nation in the military, on our streets, in emergency services and in other protective services. We understand what it takes to do your jobs and appreciate the sacrifices made so we can live in peace and harmony.
We are also blessed to have a large group of volunteers who spend hundreds of hours, whether it is the rodeo, the living history, the parades, entertainment or preparing the town for visitors, who make this annual celebration a success. In our little community, there are many big hearts, dedicated souls and tireless imaginations that keep this ball rolling throughout the year.
Next year there will be a special celebration. Special events are being planned for the 75th anniversary of the Sitting Bull Stampede. These plans have been in the works for several years and will culminate with the opening of the newly completed renovation of the Mobridge Rodeo Grounds. Members of the Mobridge Rodeo Association and the Mobridge Rodeo Foundation have been relentless in their efforts to make this renovation a reality and the fruits of their labors is evident at the rodeo grounds in the completion of the first stage.
As we plan for next year, we encourage everyone to make reservations to be here in 2020 as we celebrate the birth of a nation, the preservation of our lifestyle and the new and improved rodeo grounds.
Welcome home and we look forward to wowing you this year and next!