named Father of the Year
Prairie League held their annual Daddy Date Night Sunday, December 2 in the high school cafeteria. This year's winter theme was well attended with 78 daughters, fathers, and even grandfathers being served a delicious bite size dinner. The girls and their fathers enjoyed an evening of dinner, games, and visiting. A special thank you goes out to our cooks: Tiffany Forsmann, Cara Duman, Sheila Hasselstrom, and Shari Chaffee. They prepared a delicious meal enjoyed by all. Our servers, Keenan and Carter Shears, Kayden Duclos, Dylan Uhlenkott, and Ryan and Mathew Wemhoff also did a great job. Many of the girls wrote essays and our Father of Year Award went to Mike Duclos from his daughter Kendra's heartfelt essay. Her essay is as follows:
Obviously I will never grow up to be a dad, but I can only hope to have the same qualities that you have shown me as my dad-patience, commitment, support and love for your family.
Throughout the years you have shown me how to be a hard-worker and also how to have a little fun. Beginning when I was young, you brought me to work with you to help chore when it was absolutely freezing out, or to the harvest field to spend countless hours in the combine. On top of all the hours you spent at work throughout the week, you spent time doing something fun with us every Sunday. Whether the day was spent around the house, or up in the trees splitting firewood we had a good time. One of my most fond memories is of us spending hours outside planting more than 100 baby trees when I was about six. I felt so proud when you told me that I was your best helper, after everyone else had gone inside and we continued to work. This was the first time that I remember you teaching me to be a hard worker.
As I get older, you continue to show me the importance of putting forth your best effort. I remember the story of when my older sister wanted to start helping out in the harvest field. You told her that she could certainly help out by making the crew a homemade meal everyday! Disappointed with your answer, she argued that by this age her older brother got to run his own combine, so she should be able to also. You agreed. Girls could help out and run farm equipment just like boys. Your friend Doug also agreed that your girls could run the farm equipment just as good as he could. The amount of trust you have in us to carry this out is tremendous. When it was my turn to start helping in the harvest field, I was nervous but I knew you were going to be patient in helping me learn. I started out driving the bank-out wagon. Although I made mistakes, like the time I jack-knifed the loaded wagon down that steep hill, you always remained calm and patient. This is one of your good qualities as a dad, showing me that everything will be okay in the end no matter the mess. You’ve demonstrated that in order to move forward you have to learn from your past mistakes.
Our family is also important to you. Because your job requires you to spend long hours away from home, you often miss dinner. However, you make up for this time away from us by cooking us a warm breakfast and seeing us off to school each morning. Sometimes it may seem that I take this act for granted, but it truly means a lot to me.
The support you’ve shown me in all of my activities also means a lot to me. It always meant a lot to me when I knew you and mom were in the crowd cheering my team and I on during a basketball game, or when I knew that you guys were cheering for me at my cross country meets. Even when I sat on the bench, you were proud of me. I may not have always shown how appreciative I was, but thank you, Dad. This may have seemed small, but to me it showed great support.
The support that you have for me for my future has been very encouraging. I think that you are just as excited as I am for my future. Because of this I want to continue making you proud. You have given me a solid foundation on which to build the person I hope to become. I will always remember where I came from. I love you, Dad.
Love your daughter,
Kendra Duclos with her father Mike, who was named Father of the Year at Daddy Date Night. Photo submitted by Cara Uhlenkott.