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Fort Benton celebrates summer, Year of the Woman

 

July 3, 2014

Eric Seidle

Abby Clark, 11, of Fort Benton colors in the details of her chalk art that re-creates a classic image of Rosie the Riveter for the Fort Benton Summer Celebration's theme, "Year of the Woman."

The 38th Annual Fort Benton Summer Celebration brought hundreds of people to take part in the yearly celebration along the Missouri River.

This year's celebration held many festivities, including a parade, an Old West re-enactment, many musical artists' performances and a fishing derby.

"It's a busy three days," said Arnold Anderson, a volunteer at the Fort Benton Chamber of Commerce.

There were also many vendors booths of food and crafts for attendees to peruse.

Anderson said the event is the biggest event of the year for Fort Benton.

Each year has a theme, and this year's theme was "Year of the Woman." This theme was chosen to celebrate the centennial anniversary of women's suffrage in Montana.

"Rosie the Riveter" was used as the symbol for the events and people could find her image in many places during the festivities.

Aside from the hundreds of people from Montana alone who show up to take part in the festivities, Anderson said, he had talked to people from many different places, including oversea countries. He personally had spoken to a gentleman from France and someone from the Far East who came to the celebration to see a specific tractor that took part in the parade.

The celebration has always brought a large crowd, Anderson said. The year they dedicated the Lewis and Clark Memorial in 1976, 10,000 people attended the event.

It is not that big anymore, Anderson said, but the streets were still packed for 13 blocks for the parade Saturday.

The parade took marching bands, color guards, class reunions and classic cars - including a convertible from each decade since 1920 - down the streets of Fort Benton.

 

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