The Third weekend in September is always the Annual Santa Fe Trail Days celebration in New Franklin, MO. This year was the 30+ Annual event. No one knows for sure any more just what year it actually is. The event is held on Friday Night and all day Saturday. The Friday night event this year had a classic car cruise-in, a little Mr. & Miss Santa Fe Trail Days contest, a pedal tractor pull and a street dance. The local Eagles Lodge had a bar-b-que and a beer garden. The weather was gorgeous and the street were packed.
Saturday morning began with the ever popular baby contest which draws parents and babies from all the surrounding communties to take part. The streets were lined with vendors of all kinds. There were crafts booths, food booths, face painting, homemade pies, kids games and historical demonstrations of old-time crafts. A bounce house, a blow-up jousting pit, pony rides and the ever present dunk tank filled the closed off downtown area. A quilt show was held in a local church and there were Army Hummers along side an old time cannon display.
The afternoon began with a large parade at one o'clock. The parade has continued to grow every year and can boast of being the largest parade around. From the local police, fire dept, classic vehicles, floats, color guard, dance groups, unusual vehicle, horses and the ever present policital candidates the parade lasted well over an hour. Folks come from far and wide to take in the small town spectacle with great enjoyment. Kids go home with pockets stuffed with candy thrown from every conceivable type of conveyance.
After the parade there were various entertainment acts such as a clogging group, cake auction and skits by the High School Drama Club. One favorite was a hot dog eating contest which had a large group of entries and a large crowd of supporters. This was followed by a lyp-sync contest and a talent contest. The evening was rounded out with a teen, tween, adolescent street dance on the west end of the square with a DJ and an adult dance with a country band in and near the beer garden on the east end of the street. The day went very well and everyone had a great time.
Join us next year, the third weekend in September when it all happens again!