These wonderful people are the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Board. Say “Hi!” if you see one of them during the show!
Joanne McDermott: Event Coordinator
Hi, I am Joanne McDermott, the new Event Coordinator. My husband, Kevin, and I have lived in Oronoco since 2001. Shortly after moving here, my husband became part of the City Council which required him to be a member of the Gold Rush Board so we have been involved with Gold Rush since 2002. I served on the Board for 10 years and have volunteered since to help in many capacities during the event. While Kevin and I served and volunteered for Gold Rush, our family decided to join in the fun of volunteering. Our grandchildren volunteer for garbage duty which is a very important and sometimes dirty job! They love it and come back year after year, and look forward to finding treasures while on garbage duty. I am looking forward to seeing everyone again in August!
Ryland Eichhorst: Mayor and Chair of Gold Rush Board
My wife, Pat and I relocated to our house in River Park subdivision in March 2013 from Peosta, IA, just west of Dubuque, IA to be closer to our daughter and grandchildren, as well as Pat’s family in Lewiston and St Charles. We like what Oronoco had to offer with a small town atmosphere, but close to Rochester, well, at least Menards, 7 minutes away, and Target North!
I thoroughly enjoy being on the Gold Rush Committee. It is a great experience to have thousands of friendly people visit the Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush days! It is a lot of work, but very rewarding when you see people smiling, having a great time and carrying that lost treasure they have been looking for a long time or just bought it on impulse!
Looking forward to the event this year and years to come! See ya!
Melissa Griggs: Board Member, Volunteer Coordinator
As a new resident in Kings Park in 2003, our bond with the Oronoco community started early. I have had the opportunity to work along side the Oronoco Fire Department over the years in coordinating the Free Carbon Monoxide Detector Program for local residents and have worked with other community heroes to clean up and maintain our beautiful Zumbro River. I’m excited to add serving on the Gold Rush Committee to the list of ways I can contribute to our small community! I’m looking forward to helping Gold Rush grow its following by continuing to add new features for families and support expanded vendor options for the future!
Christine Jannetto: Board Member, Volunteer Coordinator
Hello. I am originally from Muskego, Wisconsin. After graduating from UW – Milwaukee, I worked as a Cytotechnologist until I moved into Laboratory IT to design, build, implement, and support the computer system for all Anatomic Pathology. In addition, I was the Point of Care Coordinator, integrating IT work with new patient testing instrumentation for the hospital. In 2012, I came to Minnesota with my family when my husband took a job at the Mayo Clinic. The following year, we moved into our home in Oronoco where we enjoy the small town community and friendly neighbors. Since moving to MN, I have been fortunate to be able to dedicate my time to my family, subdivision HOA, chairing state and local PTAs, and volunteering in the community.
I am excited to be a part of this wonderful Oronoco Gold Rush team and become more involved within the city. I hope to help grow and enhance the event as I share my information technology and coordination skills on the Downtown Gold Rush Days Committee.
Cory Matzke: Board Member & Vintage Car Show Coordinator
Hello, I am Cory Matzke. I have over 40 years’ experience at Gold Rush (as my parents and in-laws were vendors for decades and I have also been a vendor on my own at Gold Rush too!). I have viewed Gold Rush from both a vendor and shopper perspective over the years. I am also a business owner in Downtown Oronoco and have lived in Oronoco Township for 25 years: this is definitely my home! My wife Tammy and I are avid volunteers in other community efforts besides Gold Rush such as watershed efforts for the Zumbro River.
I joined the committee as the antiques market has changed over the years and I wanted to offer ways to keep Oronoco Gold Rush relevant and exciting.
Dana Bergner: Council Representative, Vice-Chair, Social Media, Website, 5K Coordinator
Dana has been a resident of Oronoco since 2008 and has been slightly obsessed with Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days for much longer than that! She often calls it her favorite “holiday” of the year and spends all 3 days perusing the hundreds of vendor booths that take over Downtown Oronoco on that special weekend each year. In 2019 she became involved in the show and organized the first annual Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush 5k which made her realize that she loved being involved in the show as a volunteer. So, after years filling her home with treasures during Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days, Dana felt it was time to become an official committee member, to the relief of her husband Jay! Throughout the year, Dana works on the website and all of our social media pages to keep our event current. During the event this year, you will find her visiting with shoppers and vendors or helping at the Information Booth. She also plans to sneak in a little shopping, but no need to tell her husband that!
Kristin Rogers: Board Member, Social Media
Living in a quaint town has been part of Kristin’s upbringing and a priority for raising children. Kristin and husband Karl, relocated their family to Oronoco in 2019 where they love the hometown connection and quiet surroundings. She attended college for Advertising/Graphic Design and has a passion for telling the story each business/person has tucked within. Her first experience with Gold Rush was a complete blast! Meeting vendors, shoppers, volunteers and rallying as a community gave a new meaning to being a resident of Oronoco, and gave a glimpse into yesteryear, an era worth holding onto! Being a newer member to the team, Kristin is just starting to assist with promotional areas; social media, advertising and anything art related. When she’s not buzzing around the streets during Gold Rush, Kristin enjoys teaching, painting, reading and has an active role in the homeschooling community.
Jim Phillips: Council Representative
Jim Phillips is the newest member to the Gold Rush Committee. He moved to Oronoco 2 years ago from Southern California to take care of his aging parents who live in Austin, MN. Jim is a retired Sales Manager and is currently serving on Oronoco City Council. He graduated from Austin High School, achieved his A.A. degree from Austin Jr. College and his B.S. degree from St. Cloud University. Jim is excited to be on the Gold Rush Committee and will work hard to make this year’s event a huge success.
Jim Richards: Council Representative