This weekend was all about families. Some were dysfunctional, some were nostalgic, some were furry, and some were traditional. On Friday, it was the family of Twiztid that welcomed us. And if we’re completely honest, it was slightly terrifying. Face-painted fans made their way into the Music Farm, whoop-whooping to announce their arrival — and our introduction to juggalo culture. After doing a couple of laps, we realized that we were not in Kansas anymore. Friends were being made all around us and a silent understanding seemed to take place that together, everything would be fine. But we weren’t so sure as a soundtrack of gunshots kept being played to rev up the crowd.
As Jelly Roll and Lil Wyte took the stage, the crowd became almost entranced. We tried to share the feeling, but we still didn’t feel fully welcomed or comfortable. Jelly Roll went on to explain the connection, the family, that the juggalos were — “white trash and loving it” was how he described it.
Lil Wyte then took over to share his experience from the Gathering, essentially a massive festival of juggalos that took place at the beginning of August in Illinois. Lil Wyte had found a friend there that he wanted to share: Bob the Ratchet Hatchet. Yes, Lil Wyte shared the stage with the ax he found at the concert. We’re not sure if this had a deeper juggalo meaning, but if it was, we missed the reference. Gunshots went off again, and the crowd started to really get into it. And for them that meant a lot of jumping, screaming, and throwing of liquid (although sadly, no Faygo was seen). We decided that while the introduction to the juggalo culture was nice, we were not meant to be one and headed home.
Saturday meant an early start with lots of wieners. Wiener dogs, that is. Wiener dog owners have created a different type of family, a kinship amongst their pups that borders on cultlike. Dachshunds gathered to participate in races to raise money for Mary Ashley Barbot, who is in need of a kidney transplant. More than 15 heats of races went down while the Baja Men’s “Who Let the Dogs Out?” tritely played throughout the RiverDogs stadium. The blazing heat didn’t seem to slow down the hotdogs as they sprinted to their owners. Some sprinted unconventionally, hopping the wooden fence, playing with new pup friends, or searching for the perfect pee spot in the outfield. The final heat of four dogs took to the field, and things got competitive. Not that they weren’t competitive before: one owner had already complained about her pup being taken out by another dog, while another one got a little pageant mom-ish towards her dog as she failed to make it across the finish line. The final heat blurred to an end as Sophie, Ammo, and Gigi claimed the top three spots and entry into the RiverDogs game that evening.
The costume contest, which ran over an hour late, was moved to the mezzanine as special guest judges roamed to declare winners. Pirates, princesses, hotdog vendors, and even a carriage tour leader were seen in the crowd. Six-week-old Jezebel took the crown for funniest, Maddie the Hannah Montana dog was named most creative, and the hotdog vendor took home the title of best overall costume.
On Sunday we were transported back to our childhood summer days with GoCo’s Deluge. The waterfight had friends and neighbors out enjoying the warm afternoon, while taking hydro aim at one another. The event was chaotic, but as organizer Becca, who was dressed in a Viking costume, said, “We just really wanted a community event where people could have fun.” And fun was certainly had. Alliances were made, wars were started, and laughter filled Cannon Park. DJ Martin West provided some jams, and passersbys wondered what the hell was going on. The music and Subaru car made the event seem legit, but the crowd of about 30 people made it seem less so. We had to bounce early as the temptation of joining in became too much, and visions of a ruined camera danced in our heads.
Finally, on Labor Day we made our way to Mixson Bath & Racquet Club for their neighborhood pig roast. Using a wooden box, the first Holy City Hog was roasted as members swam and socialized. Guests played bocce ball and began lining up for the roast, but then came the rain. Sadly, the thunderstorm decided to pour down just as the pig was carved. Some guests tried to stick it out, but the majority started making a run for the exit as thunder clattered and lightning lit up the sky. And just like that, our Labor Day weekend came to a crashing end.