Pioneer Village starts summer season with barbecue

A petting zoo and barbecue will mark the opening of the Ward County Historical Society’s Pioneer Village for the summer season on Saturday.

Bernice Galusha, an officer on the historical society boad, said the Rocky Top Petting Zoo will be on site at the Pioneer Village from noon to 5 p.m. The animals are owned by Dennis and Clara Erickson of Ruso.

“Kids like animals,” said Galusha, who predicted that the young children will love the petting zoo.

From 2 to 4 p.m., the grills will be hot, cooking burgers and hot dogs for everyone who attends. The Frozen Fingers band will perform at 2 p.m. on the museum grounds.

Galusha said the event is free and open to the public, but the museum will gladly accept free will offerings during the event.

Galusha said the museum will be open regularly throughout the summer season. The Pioneer Village will also be open every day during the State Fair and the museum will host different activities planned for each day of the fair.

The Pioneer Village was heavily damaged during the flood of 2011, but Galusha said a lot of progress is being made on restoring the buildings.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do yet,” said Galusha, but the museum is on the road to recovery. Visitors on Saturday will be able to visit the many historical buildings on site and see how much progress has been made restoring them.

Galusha said it’s important that people know that the museum is open on the fairgrounds and has an active board whose members are determined to make the Ward County Historical Society stronger than ever.

“We’re not going anywhere,” said Galusha.

Sponsors for Saturday’s event are Verendrye Electric Cooperative, North Prairie Rural Water District, Galusha Arena and Ward County Crop Insurance.