The Great Republic of Rough and Ready has still managed to keep its shared sense of humor and enjoyment of a good party 164 years after its short three month life. It was for want of a good party that brought The Great Republic back into the Union fold and it is another good party that the town and visitors will enjoy during the annual Secession Days celebration Sunday.
The celebration actually begins the evening before, when the local Grange No. 795 located just up the hill from downtown, will host their Secession Days Spaghetti Feed. Beginning at 6 p.m. and, for a $10 donation, guests can feast of spaghetti with meat sauce, salad, garlic bread, coffee and dessert. Socialize with friends and meet new ones. Patrons are asked to bring their own dinner service and adult beverage.
The next morning at 7 a.m. the Firefighter’s Association will cook breakfast, including eggs cooked to order, ham, pancakes and beverage for only $7 for adults and $5 for children. Breakfast will be served inside the Fire Station until 11 a.m. Meanwhile, across the street, the locally famous Fruit Jar Pickers will be entertaining the crowd with their own special blend of music and humor.
Around 10 a.m., the Pickers will yield the stage for the Rough and Ready Rascals and their latest rendition of “The Ongoing Saga of Rough and Ready: The Play,” which pokes good-natured fun at the early history of the town. At the conclusion of the play, having worked up a good appetite again, wander over to the Grange booth for a hamburger or some home-baked goodies…or make your way back to the Fire Station, where the Fire Auxiliary will offer up tacos, cold drinks and ice cream.
Always something going on, Stepside, music by Steve and Lynn Rutherford and friends, will be entertaining back on the stage for an hour or so starting at around 11:30. Following Stepside, more music will be offered by Nory Fussell and Friends for another hour.
But there’s more to Secession Day than just food and entertainment. Stroll down Marketplace Alley and check out the many and varied wares of our crafters and vendors. Stop in at the Fippin Blacksmith Shop, where our blacksmith will have fired up his forge, and where you can purchase official Rough and Ready souvenirs and apparel. The grange and fire auxiliary will host a raffle. And, certainly buy a few spaces (while they last) and take a chance on our Rough and Ready Rooster Roulette!
The firefighters will set up a free Bounce House and a Water Slide to keep the kids happy and entertained.
Things start wrapping up about 2:30 p.m. at the famliy-friendly event. There is no admission and parking is free. Overflow parking is available at the Grange Hall or down the road at the Animal Clinic. All proceeds go to help local community nonprofit organizations: The Rough and Ready Chamber of Commerce, The Rough and Ready Grange No. 795, and the Rough and Ready Firefighter’s Association and Fire Auxiliary