A walk back in time

Prairie Heritage Day, held every fall at Grimes Farm and Conservation Center, harkens back to the days before electricity, supermarkets, megamalls and other modern conveniences. On Saturday, from 2-5 p.m., folks will have the chance to try their hand at reliving the past through a variety of hands-on, family-friendly activities.

The event, sponsored by the Marshall County Conservation Board, is held in conjunction with Oktemberfest, as a way to join in on the other festivities that will be held throughout Marshalltown.

“Designed for the whole family, participants can step back in time to experience pioneer and prairie life,” said Naturalist Diane Hall. “Come celebrate with Marshall County Conservation Board and learn more about Iowa’s pioneers and prairie.”

Activities will include butter making, candle dipping, rope making, flintknapping (the process of chipping away material from high silica stones such as flint, using special tools to produce sharp projectile points or tools), spinning, cider pressing, cross cut sawing, blacksmithing, seventh cavalry, barn building techniques, antique power and wood carving. For the first time, broom making will be offered. Fry bread will be sold at the “pioneer price” of one cent each.

These demonstrations, as well as wagon rides to the observation tower, will go continuously throughout the afternoon. The Prairie Creek String Band will play at 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., and the Cornflake Cloggers are set to perform at 3:00 p.m. Horse sketches made by Ray Schult will be on display inside the conservation center, as well as an antique plow.

For more information, contact Hall at 641-752-5490.

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Contact Sara Jordan-Heintz at 641-753-6611 or sjordan@timesrepublican.com