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A look back at Wild West Days


September 5, 2019

Photo contributed

It was the year of Woodstock, Richard Nixon, Abbey Road, the Stonewall riots and the first episode of Scooby-Doo. And the small town of Mazomanie, Wisconsin, was busy celebrating the end of summer with its annual Wild West Days festival. An estimated crowd of 15,000 people turned out of the festival's big parade that Sunday, and at the head of the parade was a young woman named Roxanne Peterson, who had recently graduated from high school and been named winner of the Miss Wild West Days contest for the year. According to that week's newspaper, Peterson reigned over the festivities for the weekend after being crowned at the Saturday Night Teen Dance. The first runner-up was Norinne Butteris, and the second runner-up was Rita Brunner. Speaking to the Star News last week, Peterson, who ended up marrying the man she took to the dance that year and became Roxanne Ruland, said she sold more than $800 worth of promotional items to support Wild West Days that year. Asked if she still has her crown, she sighed, "No, I wish I did, but it probably got lost in one of the moves."

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