Getting the party started


A record crowd filled the Maple Lake American Legion Club on Saturday night to kick-start the St. Patrick’s Day celebration and support all the events sponsored by the Maple Lake Chamber of Commerce throughout the year.
Self-described “boomerangs” Tricia Manuel and Deb Geyen emceed the inaugural Irish Pre-Party and set the lighthearted mood early.
“Little did I know when I was crowned princess of Maple Lake 37 years ago that we’d be coming back and putting on this celebration,” Manuel said, referencing the first St. Patrick’s Day Festival in Maple Lake and the coinciding coronation.
According to the two, you might be from Maple Lake if you said a curse word and your parents knew within an hour, when you were exercising 20 cars pulled over to ask if you needed help and you know all the vets in the Memorial Day parade and stand and take off your hat for them, among other qualifications.
The Irish Washerwomen kept everyone laughing as they danced with Grand Marshal Greg Thomes, Chamber President Mark Redemske and Chamber Member of the Year Scott Chantland.
After dinner, provided by HH Catering, comic ventriloquist David Malmberg took the stage as the featured entertainment of the night. He introduced the crowd to grouchy farmer Leonard Cribble, clueless Lars Gunderson and Simon Spencer. Each took turns cracking jokes, many at the expense of a few spectators.
Other spectators were rewarded, as the winners of the silent auction and raffles were announced and two other fundraisers concluded. The winning half-cards were drawn in the split-the-pot card game and three individuals split the $200 winnings of heads or tails when all three opted to choose heads incorrectly to end the game.
More information appears in this week's Messenger.