Some of the long-gone people who helped establish a northern Iowa city many decades ago are being brought back to life, in a way, this weekend. A History Walk is being held at the Elmwood-St. Joseph Cemetery in Mason City. Organizer John Henry says it’s an opportunity to learn about the community’s history through the ghosts of the people who lived it.
Henry says there are individuals who will re-inact and portray those characters as you go from one gravesite to another, standing next to the person’s gravesite and talking about the person’s life and what was going on in Mason City.
He says it’s a great chance to learn some history and have some fun with those characters. Henry describes some of the people who will be portrayed in the walk. The ghosts include an early industrialist who brought the telephone network to Mason City, an early settler who founded the city’s first saw mill, allowing residents to build homes and businesses without having to ship in materials from far away, and a lawyer who helped get the Prairie style of architecture established in town.
Henry says the History Walk helps raise funds to fix up some areas of the cemetery without the use of tax dollars. Improvements need to be made to the cemetery gate, to plant new trees and to restore some gravestones.
There is a Saturday afternoon walk at 4:30, a chili supper from 6:00 to 7:00, with the evening stroll starting at 7:30. Tickets are $20 for the entire event, with separate tickets available for the walk, the stroll or the supper. Tickets may be purchased at the event or ahead of time at Hy-Vee East and West.
(Reporting by Bob Fisher, KRIB, Mason City)