---- — The Strasburg Lions Club is set to hold their most eventful Homecoming yet on July 11 and 12. Bands both nights, inflatables for kids, and an event hosted by Ballard Nature Center are a just a few of the fun coming to Strasburg.
On July 11 at 5 pm the Lions will serve dinner consisting of pork chops, burgers, and hot dogs. Ice cream and cake will be served by the LYF. The Altamont Community Choir will begin on stage at 6:00 pm. This group of community singers began 10 years ago and they have since preformed at EPC, The Lighthouse, and the Living Museum. They perform a variety of music from gospel to seasonal to patriotic. They will be doing a “Salute to Veterans” in honor of our service men and women.
Following the Choir, the winner (or loser) of the annual Kiss The Pig contest will be announced. This year’s participants are Brad Montgomery, Dave Burton, Jordan Jones, and Mitch Stewart, as well as, Cinda Held, Angie Edwards, Carolyn Reed, and Sara Locke. The top earning male and female will kiss the pig. It is a penny per vote and cans can be found at SCSB Bank in Strasburg, Marathon in Strasburg, and 3rd Base Bar.
After the pork gets kissed, Strasburg’s own Rufus Cool Band will take the stage. Rufus Cool is comprised of Strasburg residents Alicia Manuel Kessler and Ron Sporleader. Rufus Cool has played the last few years at Homecoming and always provides great entertainment with their stripped down acoustic style play. Rufus Cool draws songs from The Beatles to Old Show Medicine Show, to Sheryl Crow. Band number three and headliner for the evening, Stone Blue 52, will take the stage at 9:00 pm. Stone Blue 52 has a diverse song selection as they draw from Stevie Ray Vaughn to Merle Haggard to R.E.M. They are comprised of many members from bands past including The Wanderers, Black and Blue, and Prairie Fire. The beer garden will be open 7 pm – 12 midnight.
Saturday, July 12 kicks off early with the 3rd Annual 5K & 1 Mile run/walk. Registration begins at 7:30 am with the run beginning at 8:30 am. For more information contact Lion Mike Antonacci at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 217-343-9789. The fastest growing and most exciting event, the Strong Man and Woman Contest, begins registration at 9:30 am. Registration begins at 8:45 am. This event is one you will not want to miss, and if you think you have what it takes, compete in. Competitors from around the state have already began preregistering, ensuring this event has doubled in size and buzz. For more information contact Lion Brian Shelton at email@example.com.
The annual tractor pull begins at 12 noon with weigh in at 10 am. The Lions and track workers are working hard and will have the track ready by noon, in order to start on time. For more information on classes and times for the tractor and truck pull contact Lions Barry Wittenberg (217-273-2166) or Lion Dennis Wirth (217-254-6628).
Kids games will once again be at 11:00 am on the ball diamond with the pedal pull starting at 1 pm. This is fun for kids of all ages and we encourage you to bring them and watch their joy. At 2:30 the annual Bean Bag/ Corn Hole Tournament will begin on the diamond. The beer garden will open at 12 Noon. Ballard Nature Center will have a special event set up for the kids and inflatables will be set up in the park to entertain kids all day.
The main event of the night will be the new addition of a band in the beer garden Saturday night. “Suede” band will begin playing at 9 pm on the ball diamond. Suede has been performing all over the Midwest for over 20 years. They have played the State Fair twice, played in Nashville at the widely popular “Fuel” club, which was on CMT. They have played all over at fests including Bagel Fest in Mattoon. They play songs from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s with music ranging from Lynard Skynard, Bob Seager, REO Speedwagon, all the way to Merle Haggard and George Straight.