Tracy Tornado memorial to be revealed during Box Car Days

It’s a mix of community traditions, new attractions, food and activities for all ages. One thing is for certain about Box Car Days, Missie Erbes said. “You will not get bored.”

Erbes, director of the Tracy Area Chamber of Commerce, said organizers for this year’s Box Car Days are hoping for good weather and good crowds to come out and enjoy it. On the schedule this year are plenty of old favorites, as well as some new and special events.

One of the events being planned goes beyond special, to being historic for Tracy. In commemoration of the 45th anniversary of the F-5 tornado that struck the town in 1968, a new stone memorial will be dedicated along U.S. Highway 14 on Monday morning. A group of Tracy area residents has been raising money for the monument, which will stand by the “Tornado Tree” sculpture remembering the tornado. The monument will include the names of the nine people who lost their lives in the event.

After months of anticipation, Erbes said, “It will be great to see” the new monument.

Some new Box Car Days events will help kick off the weekend tonight and Saturday morning. For the first time, Erbes said, the bingo stand will be open today.

“It tends to be a very good draw,” attracting many different people and families, she said. Another new feature will be the “Kegs and Eggs” breakfast Saturday morning at the beer tent. Erbes said the breakfast will feature scrambled eggs and sausage and won’t be an adults-only event. Erbes said the name of the event will hopefully get some laughs, or get visitors thinking back on their college days.

Lots of old favorites like the Box Car Days carnival and the grand parade on Monday will be returning, Erbes said. On Sunday night, a Tracy tradition will continue, with the Miss Tracy Scholarship Program. A total of 10 contestants will share their talents in hopes of being named Miss Tracy for 2014.

Musical entertainment will also be a big part of Box Car Days. The Box Car Grammies will be returning to the festival tonight, Erbes said. A group of 12 qualifying contestants from events held earlier this year will compete for cash prizes. And on Saturday night, Hicktown Mafia will provide the rock and country soundtrack to the Box Car Days street dance.

“We’re very excited to have them back. It’s a good mixture of music,” she said.



4 p.m. – Tractor drive at the Wheels Across the Prairie Museum

5-8 p.m. – Tracy Area Chamber Burger Night at downtown municipal parking lot. Beer garden opens at 5.

6:30-11 p.m. – Bingo stand

8 p.m. – Box Car Grammies

8:30 p.m. – Beer pong tournament at the beer tent. Registration begins at 7, cost is $10 per team.


Annual 400 Open golf tournament

8 a.m.-noon – Tracy area farmers and craft market at the corner of 4th and Morgan

8:30 a.m.-noon – Scrambled eggs, sausages and beverages in the beer tent.

9:30 a.m. – Old Fashioned Kids’ Day at the Wheels Across the Prairie Museum, featuring kids’ activities and games, petting zoo, train rides and scavenger hunt. Museum admission button is $6, kids 12 and under $2.

10 a.m. – Kids parade begins at Wheels Across the Prairie Museum. Registration begins at 9:30, theme is “Riding the Rails.”

11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Burger lunch at Wheels Across the Prairie Museum

2 p.m. – Texas Hold ‘Em tournament at the Tracy Eagles Club

3 p.m. – Bean bag tournament by the beer garden. Registration begins at 2 p.m., cost is $30 per team.

4-11 p.m. – Bingo stand

4 p.m. – Midwest Rides and Concessions opens. Bracelet night from 7-11 p.m.

9 p.m. – Street dance featuring Hicktown Mafia


9 a.m.-1 p.m – Dad’s Belgian Waffles at St. Mary’s Church hall

10 a.m. – Mud volleyball tournament at the Caboose. Cost is $60 per team.

10 a.m. – Horseshoe tournament at Nehls Park. Registration begins at 9:30.

11 a.m. – Faith on the Prairie old time community service at St. Mark’s Church at Wheels Across the Prairie Museum. Museum button required.

11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Family Fun Day at Central Park featuring petting zoo, big truck display. Tae kwon do demonstrations at noon.

Noon – Antique tractor pull at the Wheels Across the Prairie Museum

Noon – Midwest Rides and Concessions open. Bracelet day from 1-5 p.m.

1-11 p.m. – Bingo stand

2 p.m. – Texas Hold ‘Em tournament at the Tracy Eagles Club

6:30 p.m. – Miss Tracy Scholarship Program at the Tracy Area High School auditorium

9-midnight – Karaoke at the beer garden


7-11 a.m. – Fly-in/drive-in breakfast at Tracy Municipal Airport. Salute to the Armed Forces at 10 a.m. Antique cars and motorcycles on display. Airplane rides available.

8:30 a.m. – Box Car Days Road Race at Central Park. Featuring 5K walk/run, 10K run and kids’ mile and half-mile races. Registration/check-in begins at 7:30 a.m.

9 a.m.-4 p.m. – Arts and crafts fair at the St. Mary’s School gymnasium

9 a.m.-4 p.m. – St. Mary’s food stand

11:30 a.m. – Tracy Tornado Memorial dedication, along U.S. Highway 14 at Tracy Tornado Tree Monument.

Noon – Midwest Rides and Concessions opens.

1 p.m. – Grand parade

2:30-6 p.m. – Bingo stand

3 p.m. – Tracy pigeon race at the beer tent.