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Boomtown Committee members have been working hard for months for next weekend's big event.

Going into our 8th year, I am always surprised when I run into people that have no idea what Boomtown is. On the flip-side, I am always thrilled when I am in any other part of the state and meet people that have heard of Boomtown! I confess, I like to peek at the Boomtown Facebook page followers, just to see where they’re all from ~ and believe me, they are from EVERYwhere!

How do I convince “newbies” to come to Boomtown, and once they agree, how do I convince them that they need to be ON the fairgrounds, IN the grandstands? I start by telling them that there really is no other event that is like Boomtown. It’s like a one day carnival -- but instead of rides, we have Pyrotechnics (a fancier name for FIREWORKS) – we have Booms, we have stars, we have percussion, ALL set to music and ALL made possible by the absolute masters of their craft, the Iowa Pyrotechnic Association. 2014 National Grand Champions! It doesn’t get any better than that!

How do I describe to these “newbies” what goes on at Boomtown? I tell them it’s a “Party in the Dark” with a few thousand of your neighbors. We have live music by a fantastic band that has been with us before. The “Large Midgets” are literally going out with a bang, as Boomtown 2014 will be their final gig as a group!! (we are honored!) We have over 15 food vendors onsite, and we’ve got free inflatables to keep the kids happy! The party goes on until the IPA takes center field and starts their show with a personalized rendition of the National Anthem and continues into their individual displays, an unbelievable FULL show by their junior members (as in minors – as in CHILDREN!), and then, when your hands already hurt from clapping, the lights go out and there is an almost deafening roar from the crowd because they know -- they know what’s coming. Thunder is coming. Lightning is coming. AWESOME is coming.

It doesn’t take long for these ‘newbies’ to recognize that they are talking to whom they might think is Boomtown’s biggest fan, me. They would be mistaken though. I work with the best group of people there is ~ an excellent combination of Vinton citizens and IPA members. We are ALL as equally dedicated to the show and committed to giving our visitors to Vinton the best experience possible. Both inside the grandstands and out!

We had our final ‘prep meeting’ last night, Aug. 21, and I am happy to report that “our ducks are all in a row”! Next week we’ll all be together again, but we’ll be in work clothes with hammers, fencing, signs, paint and measuring tapes in tow!

If you should see one of your Boomtown committee members before, during or after the show, give them a “High Five”. After all, a PARTY IN THE DARK like this one is worth celebrating!!

Boomtown Committee members pictured are: (left to right) Tami Stark, Chris Anderson, Dan Engledow, Kathy Tranel, Tom Pingenot, Brenda Hackbarth, Dave Henkle, Charles Yedlik, Heather Chingren, Matt Marovec, Bob Mahood, Michael Chingren, Eunice Pingenot, Dianne Hauschild NOT PICTURED: Scott Geissinger, Gary McKenna. (Photos courtesy of Anthony Bopp)

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