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Andersons selected to serve as grand marshals for Ritzville Community Parade on Saturday

 

Last updated 8/30/2018 at Noon

2018 GRAND MARSHALS. The Ritzville Community Parade on Sept. 1 will be led by active volunteers Dale and Yvonne Anderson, as they have been selected as the 2018 Grand Marshals. -Journal photo by Katelin Davidson

Attendees of the Ritzville Community Parade will see two familiar faces at the helm of the event, as Dale and Yvonne Anderson have been selected as the 2018 Grand Marshals.

As active members of the community, the Andersons were nominated by members of the public, and then selected for the role by the Ritzville Area Chamber of Commerce board members. The couple believes volunteerism is the key to a community’s success, and have always been dedicated to giving back to the community they love.

Dale was born and raised in the Ritzville community, and 39 years ago when the couple was married, Yvonne came and joined him in to enjoy rural living.

After a career in the criminal justice field, Yvonne retired nearly five years ago. She worked for the Adams County Sheriff’s Office for 23 years.

Dale recently retired from Big Bend Electric Cooperative after working for the business for 17 and a half years. While he loved the work he did for the company, he has equally enjoyed retirement.

“I think I’ve only worn long pants twice since I retired,” Dale joked, proudly displaying his shorts.

Sarcasm, humor and laughter are prominent in the Andersons daily life, as the couple constantly remains upbeat telling stories and sharing jokes with those around them. Living a positive and encouraging lifestyle is important to the couple, especially to Dale and his work with area youth.

Dale has always had a passion for sports, which is evident from his work as a coach for local sports teams, as well as his weekly guest sports column, “Worst Seat in the House”, in The Ritzville Journal. According to Yvonne, he also watches sports on the TV regularly, regardless of what team is playing.

Currently, Dale serves as the assistant football coach and the head boys’ basketball coach for Lind-Ritzville/Sprague-Lamont middle school teams.

While Dale watches, writes or coaches sports, Yvonne can usually be found with a quilting project in hand. The couple converted an old bunk house on their property into a quilting studio for Yvonne, which serves as her own personal retreat.

Yvonne’s quilts are always popular and high sellers at local auctions, and she never sells the products she makes; she always gives them as gifts or donates them to a fundraiser.

When she does not have a project in hand, she can be found at a weekly gathering of other area quilters.

Yvonne enjoys the solitude of working on quilts, but also the camaraderie and energy of other women who share her passion for the hobby.

She also donated her talents to help sew the wall coverings at The Ritz Theatre with Marge Schoessler during restoration project nearly five years ago.

Yvonne also assisted in restoring the seats at the theatre, as well as volunteering at the local venue.

Yvonne explained one of the largest benefits of retirement is being able to have a chance to help in the community. She added the importance of volunteering is not just about signing up to do something you enjoy, but rather volunteering to help a local event succeed.

The couple has been heavily involved in community service even before retirement, and Yvonne explained when she moved to Ritzville, volunteering provided her with an opportunity to meet new people and create lasting friendships.

“Once I came to Ritzville, I learned the only way small towns run is if people get involved,” she stated. “The town won’t survive if you don’t get out and get involved.”

Majorie and Pete Lefevre served as two motivators to volunteer when Yvonne moved to the community. Twenty-five years ago, the Lefevres were selected to be grand marshals for the parade, and today their influence and encouragement to volunteer is present with the current grand marshals.

Yvonne has volunteered and been active with the Quilt Guild, Blues Fest, Ralston Grange, Wheat Land Communities’ Fair board, Women’s Club, 4-H spring sewing camps and at the Ritzville Museums.

Dale has served in roles such as Ritzville Area Chamber of Commerce president for four years, Ritzville Lions Club president twice, Ralston Grange master, and also was involved with Caring Neighbors, Ritzville Museums, Blues Fest, running the shot clock at basketball games and being a member of the Chain Gang for LRS football.

As the couple transitions into retirement together, they plan to continue to volunteer locally and remain active members of the community. They are planning to do more traveling, but will always return to the town that they love.

“The most important thing about small towns is the people. Everyone cares; that’s what small towns are all about. People helping people,” Dale said.

The couple stated quite simply, they love where they live.

For the people who say there is nothing to do here, Dale stated that simply means they are not looking. The community is filled with opportunities for involvement and activities, and one only needs to apply themselves to learn about the possibilities available in the town.

The Andersons will lead the Ritzville Community Parade at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 1.

In the true spirit of the couple, Dale will then leave to attend an Eastern Washington University football game, while Yvonne will head to the fairgrounds to volunteer at the quilting booth.

 

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