Each year during Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days, we collect non-perishable food items for our local food shelf. The food shelf is an important resource in our community and is open to residents of Olmsted County. Bring your food item to the Information Booth near the Post Office during Gold Rush and receive a small gift.

Volunteers are vital to the food shelf so your participation is most welcome!  This type of volunteering is an easy and fun way to give back to your community.  Please call Rachel Stanton for more information about volunteering or to schedule a time to visit 507-250-0428 or Lance at 507-367-4952.  Food donations are welcome and can be dropped off either at the Food Shelf during open hours, or at Oronoco City Hall. 

The Food Shelf is open the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month from 5pm to 7pm in the spring, summer and fall. During the winter, the hours change to 4pm to 6pm. The Oronoco Food Shelf is located in the Presbyterian Church at 20 3rd street SW in Oronoco.

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How do we thank all the vendors and shoppers?

Lucy and her son Elliot were just two of the thousands of shoppers who came to the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days, this past weekend.  Besides the treasures they found at this particular booth they proceeded to find many more as they ventured out through old downtown Oronoco.

Elliot was scouting out the toy selection on Friday.

Both Lucy and Elliot also made themselves available as volunteers.  For two days they took a 2 hour shift delivering ice to the vendors.  Elliott was insistent that they volunteer again next year. Lucy agreed.

As I began this post, I asked..... "How can we thank all the vendors and shoppers?" ( who came to participate in Oronoco's non-profit event the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days)

Let's begin with a thank you to all the volunteers who helped us as well.  Beyond the golf carts, there was the volunteer fire department and first responders, who all worked their best to build funds for the best equipment to protect the Oronoco residents. They also prepared meals for the volunteers and shoppers.

In the VFW there were Veterans and their family members who prepared meals for the visitors and also had meals available for our volunteers.

Grace Lutheran Church returned this year with pies again, (we missed seeing their pies last year) and their new Pastor and his family were volunteering as well to help make this years event a success.

The Presbyterian Church is located up the hill from the old downtown, but they too had volunteers who set up a resting tent, providing shade and seats for nursing mothers or others needing a break.  They also made their parking lot available for the vendors to park their car there, while they worked their booths. (hopefully leaving a donation in the church donation box.)

One more non-profit organization that set up a booth this year was the Lions Club from Oronoco.  We know they use some of their funds to set up the winter skating rink in downtown Oronoco, and in the summer they host evening movies in the Oronoco City Park.

And for all the vendors, who drove many hours to be here, we send a big THANK YOU! We hope to see you next year and so do many of your customers.  We walked around and got feed back from the vendors and will work to continue to make the event a win for them as much as it was for us.

To the Shoppers we are grateful for no rain, cool temperatures in the morning and that you came to the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days .  Speaking for the red shirt volunteers who worked for a year to get the show organized, we know the show would not be a success without the shoppers.  Thank you for coming and for telling your friends to check us out as well.

And last but not least thank you for ALL the other volunteers who participated in making the 2018 Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days a wonderful family friendly place to be.

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NNO Oronoco Gold Rush Volunteer cook the food.We want to Remind all of the Oronoco residents about the National Night Out event, that the donations from the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days helps to sponsor.  This is happening Tuesday August 7th, at the Oronoco City Park  We hope you will come and bring your children.

Taken well before the crowds showed up! This got really busy about ten minutes later.

Along with Fire Trucks, the Sheriff and his canine companion, there are bouncy houses and gift bags for the children.

There are hot dogs or burgers with chips and sodas for everyone who wants one. And you get a chance to meet the volunteers of the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days who will be cooking and working to give you a night to remember.

Oronoco NNO draws a crowd.And if you stay long enough there are door prizes for the adults as well.  Of course with the noise of the crowds you will have to listen carefully as the Oronoco Mayor calls out the names of the winners.

Before you leave please make sure you have wandered over to the table where they are looking for volunteers to sign up to help with this years Gold Rush Event.

It has come to our attention that there might be a misunderstanding about where the proceeds from the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days goes. Besides the best Fireworks Show that has happened in Oronoco there are many organizations that receive part of the earnings from the Gold Rush Event.  And if you come on Tuesday night you will get to see another example of how our NON-Profit organization,(Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days) does truly return the monies to the community.   And you too can become a part of this endeavor by volunteering and attending the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days beginning on Friday August 17th and ending on Sunday August 19th.

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Shean Fritts, the creator of Bill, Clare and Jack
With gratitude we wish to acknowledge the work of Shean Fritts

As we move into the 2018 Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Event, we have been making some changes to the Website.

You might see less of our favorite characters Bill, the miner, Clare the brains behind the hunt, and Jack the burro who carries the treasures.  We would be amiss is we didn't acknowledge our gratitude to the artist who has given so much of his time to creating these for us.

Shean Fritts is not only has been the artist who created these characters but he has also served as a volunteer on the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Committee. Sean has put even more hours into helping to get the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Event Days into fruition.

Many do not know all the work it takes to put this event on.  All the Committee members attend the once a month meeting for a year to discuss all the work that needs to be done.  As different needs come up the individual members each help carry the load to get the tasks done.  As August draws near the pace picks up and more needs arise.  The committee members will be seen at the National Night Out either cooking burgers and hot dogs or helping the city staff to serve the food to our attendees.  There is also a committee member or two manning a table looking for more volunteers who might want to help at the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Event.

Well Shean is not serving on the 2018 Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Committee and he will be missed. But we can't let him leave without saying thank you.  When you come to the 2018 Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Event, stop by the information booth and you will still find Shean's work.  A favorite of many who come is to poke their heads into the holes above Bill or Claire so they can take a photo to remember each years visit to Oronoco.

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Can you notice any changes since you last visited this web site?  In an effort to make your inquiries regarding the 2018 Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days easier, we are working to make improvements to the web page.

You will find photos of the volunteers from previous shows under the heading of past events photos.  The places you might choose to stay over night are listed under Shopper Information.  As we get closer to the show postings will be added to let you know the vendors who have confirmed that they will be here, and the maps will be updated so you can located your favorites.

Of course we are always looking for more volunteers so if you want to get involved you can go under contact us and find links and forms to fill out. Even though the majority of the set up for the show occurs in August if you contact us we could find something that you might enjoy helping with.


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