AXTELL — Memorial Day services and celebrations will take place this weekend after a year of going without or having smaller ceremonies.
The community of Axtell will hold its annual Memorial Day celebration and has added more events to the schedule this year, said Axtell City Clerk Vicki Nelson.
“It’s always been what Axtell has done and what it’s known for,” Nelson said. “We want to keep the young people and the kids involved so it doesn’t die out with the older generation.”
The celebration will kick off at 1 p.m. Saturday when the Axtell Swimming Pool opens for the summer. The festivities will continue at 1 p.m. Sunday with the Sarah Nelson Donate Life Walk followed by Fox Fit cornhole, bingo and a hamburger and hotdog cookout at 2 p.m. at Thunderhead in Axtell.
Memorial Day activities will begin at 8 a.m. Monday with the Presbyterian Pancake Breakfast at First Presbyterian Church in Axtell followed by a program at 10 a.m. at the Pleasant Hills Cemetery.
A patriotic-themed parade will begin at 11 a.m. along with a barbecue meal on Main Street, kettle corn served by TeamMates and Lease A Cheerleader at Axtell Community School. At noon, there will be a kids treasure hunt at the tennis courts and Keene Kids 4-H Pie at Community Hall. The kids’ activities will continue at 2 p.m. with the Kids Olympiad at the football field, bounce houses and slide at North Park and horseshoes at South Park. The pool will open at 2 p.m., and there will be Lace It Up Co-Ed Volleyball at 2 p.m. at the school.
Proceeds from the event will support Axtell area programs. Nelson is grateful to area businesses who have sponsored the event and that younger generations are getting involved.
“We are a great bedroom town that lives here because of Kearney and some of these places. ... We are thankful to anybody who contributes to keep small town traditions alive,” she said.
Other Memorial Day events and ceremonies in Hub Territory include:
8 a.m. Saturday — Volunteers needed to place flags for Avenue of Flags at Kearney Cemetery
10 a.m. Monday — Memorial Day celebration on stage in Kearney Cemetery with guest speaker Frederick Craigie, master of ceremonies Bill Crosier and the Rev. Robert Fitzgerald. Reading of veterans who recently have passed away by Buffalo County Veterans Service officer Bill Williams.
Amherst and Miller
8:30-10:30 a.m. Monday — Orville Greeley American Legion Post 351 of Miller will honor veterans with services at 8:30 a.m. at Stanley Cemetery in Amherst, 9:30 a.m. at Immanuel Cemetery north of Amherst and 10:30 a.m. at Armada Cemetery north of Miller. Speakers will be Chaplain Roy Long of the American Legion Post 351 and the Rev. Quinton Cundiff of Trinity Lutheran Church. Junior members of the Sons of the Legion will assist with honors for unknown soldiers. Poppies, which are made by veterans, will be available at the service. The Senior Group from Miller will be serving lunch at the Miller Hall following the services at Armada.
10 a.m. Monday — Services by VFW Post 9481 at Pleasanton Cemetery.
9:30 a.m. Monday — Coffee and doughnuts followed by Memorial Day service at 10:30 a.m. at the Hildreth School. The guest speaker will be the Rev. Caroline Keenan.
5 p.m. Friday — Meet at Highland Park Cemetery to place flags on graves. Volunteers are needed.
6 a.m. Monday — Meet at City Auditorium to put up Avenue of Flags, weather permitting. Volunteers are needed.
9 a.m. Monday — Parade beginning at City Auditorium featuring veterans, Color Guard, rifle squad, Boy Scouts and Ravenna High School snare drummer. Buses will take people from Seneca Sunrise Assisted Living to Ravenna Cemetery, master of ceremonies will be Bob Roy. The Ravenna band will perform the national anthem and military taps.
Following cemetery, veterans will march down Main Street to raise flag at Veterans Wall.
8-11:30 a.m. Monday — Ceremonies hosted by American Legion Post 94 and Heartwell VFW Post 5537. Ceremonies will be 8 a.m. at Eaton Cemetery in Heartwell, 8:30 a.m. at Holy Family Cemetery north of Heartwell, 9 a.m. at Liberty Cemetery, 10 a.m. at Fredricksburg, 11:30 a.m. at Minden Cemetery.
12:30 p.m. Monday — Barbecue at the Windmill in downtown Minden. Open to the public. $10 for adults, and children ages 10 and younger are free.
9:30 a.m. Monday — Service at Shelton Cemetery by Shelton American Legion Auxiliary Post 297 and Gibbon American Legion Post 310.
10:45 a.m. Monday — Service at Gibbon Cemetery by Shelton American Legion Auxiliary Post 297 and Gibbon American Legion Post 310.