The 88th annual Viola Horse and Colt Show, scheduled for Sept. 21-22, has been canceled because of the rain and flood events Aug. 27-28 and Sept. 3-4.

Greg Kellogg, president of the Horse and Colt Show, said the decision to call off the event was made Sept. 5. He said this is only the second time the event has been canceled. The first time was two years ago, also because of flooding.

“Anything off the blacktop is unattainable,” Kellogg said. “There is damage to the infrastructure. It was for the safety of everyone involved (that we canceled). We’re pretty hurt we can’t put it on but Mother Nature dictates what we do.”

Kellogg said the annual raffle drawing will not be held and the organization will refund everyone’s money.

According to the Viola Horse and Colt Show website, people should keep their 2018 premium books because the decision was made to use them for the 2019 show; only the dates will be different.

The Viola Horse and Colt Show Ranch Rodeo has been moved to the Wild West Days grounds in Viroqua and will take place Friday, Sept. 21, beginning at 6 p.m.

“We asked Wild West Days if we could use the grounds,” said Amy Nichols, contact person for the rodeo.

Nichols said there is no fee to watch the rodeo. “We love having spectators come to cheer them on.”

The ranch rodeo events include trailer loading, branding, and sort and pen. There will also be shoot-out penning and jackpot barrels.

Proceeds from the entries and fees paid by rodeo participants will go to rebuilding the Viola Horse and Colt Show Arena.

Contact Nichols at 608-633-45 98 for details about the rodeo.

Driftless Area Art Festival

The 14th annual Driftless Area Art Festival will be held Sept 15-16 on the Crawford County Fairgrounds in Gays Mills instead of Beauford T. Anderson Park in Soldiers Grove.

Eighty-one visual artists from across the region, 10 local culinary artists and four musical groups will be part of the festival.

The festival features art in traditional as well as contemporary styles. Creative pieces by elementary, middle and high school students will be on exhibit in the Youth Art tent, where young people can also experiment with a variety of artist activities.

A popular festival feature is the chance to vote for a favorite artist in the People’s Choice contest. Kids can tag their favorites’ booths. In addition, Best of Show and Merit awards will be presented on Saturday and displayed for the rest of the weekend.

A silent auction of works donated by participating artists will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day, with proceeds going to help stage the festival.

Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, at the Crawford County Fairgrounds, 17725 Hwy. 131, just south of Gays Mills. Admission is free, and there’s free and accessible parking.

For full details on the festival, its schedule and other features, visit the festival website at and the festival Facebook page.

Gays Mills Apple Festival

The village of Gays Mills has announced that its Apple Festival celebration will be held as scheduled, despite recent flooding in the area.

Village President Harry Heisz said the 60th Annual Apple Festival will be held Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 28-30. “We’re confident that the streets and other grounds will be free of flood waters and cleaned up before the end of the month,” he said in a press release.

“We’ve had tremendous help from many volunteers, organizations, village staff and other government agencies, and feel we’re in good shape for the festival.”

Apple Festival consists of many food stands, the arts and crafts show, a flea market, carnival rides, music, a run-walk, tournaments and the Apple Fest Parade on Sunday.

More information about Apple Fest, including the schedule of events, can be found at, as well as on the Gays Mills Facebook page.

Subscribe to Breaking News

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Angela Cina can be reached at


Vernon County Broadcaster editor

Angie Cina is editor of the Vernon County Broadcaster. Contact her at 608-637-5616.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Thanks for reading. Subscribe or log in to continue.

Already a subscriber?
Log in or Activate your account.