Small Town Festivals to Avoid (Or Seek Out)

by Erich Martin

Jan 4, 2019

Grandpa’s in the Tuff Shed © Misty Faucheux | Flickr

Trends / Unique Itineraries & Tours

A few weeks before Thanksgiving, I happened to think about an old television show. WKRP in Cincinnati aired during the late 1970s and early 80s, and the show sticks out in my mind due to one of its Thanksgiving specials, where the radio station holds a turkey drop, dropping live turkeys from a helicopter. This led to a quick Google search and, lo and behold, there is a real festival in America where something like this happens.


Yellville, Arkansas, is a small town just south of the Missouri border, and every year, live turkeys are thrown out of small planes about 500 feet in the air. The actual drop is not purported to be part of the festival, but it still appears to be the main attraction. The 72-year tradition has come under fire in recent years. The Yellville Chamber of Commerce recently pulled out of sponsoring the event. The festival takes place in October each year.


In Colorado, festival participants gather in celebration of a cryogenically frozen dead guy. Every March, travelers come from around the world in order to pay homage and visit Grandpa Bredo, who sits in suspended animation in a Tuff Shed, waiting for his big thaw. The festival features a number of attractions, like a music festival, coffin racing, polar plunging and much, much more. Frozen Dead Guy Days is celebrated every March in Nederland, Colorado.


The Talkeetna Moose Dropping Festival is over, but, for more than 35 years, hundreds of attendees gathered to celebrate moose droppings falling from aircraft.


The festival featured good food and drinks in addition to betting on which piece of numbered dung would land on a target. It was largely all in good fun until debauchery took over. With 5,000 in attendance in the festival’s final year, 2009, there were a number of incidents resulting in a man’s death, among other problems. The festival’s final year was 2009.


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