Its that time of year again, the last full weekend in July. This weekend will mark the 67th Krumrie Reunion. This reunion is held to reconnect the decedents of Herman and Tillie Krumrie. Herman and Tillie had 10 children of their own and also had 3 other children they raised as their own and all were known as brothers and sisters.
Our family reunion is a little different than most. Most of the family reunions in our area of Wisconsin consist of a Sunday potluck meal at noon in a local park. But the Krumrie’s, our reunion last all weekend and as time goes by small changes take place but the spirit continues. In the early years it was a Sunday afternoon affair and I can still remember those days, but about 1980 it moved to an all weekend affair.
Friday night was the gathering of the family members traveling from all across America. Most people lived in Wisconsin and Minnesota but a few would travel from Washington and California. We would set up our campers and tents as our homes for the weekend. The night would start with a bonfire, beer and lots of conversation late into the night.
Saturday would welcome the blurred eyed family members to a new day. Our day would start with a big breakfast with pancakes, egg, sausage and homemade donuts. A free donation would be collected into a 5 gallon pail. That same pail is still used today some 30 years later. After breakfast the decks of cards would be unwrapped and family would pair up for card games all after noon. As the people played cards they would talk about their growing up years and what was going on in their lives today. Evening would bring another potluck meal followed by an auction and then music and dancing late into the night. The money raised at the auction offsets the reunion costs so the family dues are ten dollars per year, and the cost is still the same today.
Sunday morning the early risers would go to a local golf course for a round of 9 holes of golf. The non-golfers would stay back and cook the chicken for the noon meal. Yes, it was another potluck meal. After the meal would be the family meeting welcoming new family members into the family and remembering those we lost over the past year. By early afternoon we all would head home.
Today only 1 of the Krumrie children is still alive. The family members that gather today are the ones who want to stay connect as a family and it is still a two day affair. We have made changes over the years as younger members are stepping up and showcasing their talents. Our auction brings in many homemade items by family members. Everything from stained glass works, to knitting, small quilts and homemade wines.
A few years ago when Laurel turned 50 we grilled a hog for her celebration. My one cousin tasted the pork and said “Damn Freddy, that is some good eating!” “Do you thing you grill a hog for the reunion?” I said yes, now over the past few years, I am grilling a half a hog for the Saturday evening meal. My cousin told me, “Remember, it is like the Supreme Court, you have to die to get out of grill the hog!” I guess I have a date for the next 30 years.
This year brought 60 people together for breakfast on Saturday morning. Then in the evening brought even a larger crowd. Some of us attend every year and there are others can only make it once every 5 years. We welcome everyone back each year. This year at the family meeting Denny, the younger President, said “15 years ago I didn’t care about the meeting.” Today family is everything!” We as a family have something special. As we tell others of our reunion we all know our family is special.
We are a blessed family.