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Showdown will return to Wadena

The Colgate Country Showdown state final will again be in Wadena this summer.

The date is tentatively set for Sept. 5 or 6, said Sherry Linnes, an organizer for the event and promotion coordinator for KWAD and Superstation K-106.

Linnes is already gearing up for the state singing competition, as well as preliminary competition, semi-finals and local finals throughout the summer.

The primary entities responsible for putting together the event are the Convention and Visitor's Bureau, Wadena Area Chamber of Commerce, Wadena Veterans of Foreign Wars club and the radio station. Also, the city of Wadena helps with the event, Linnes said. There are also many volunteers throughout the community, she said.

"This is a community effort," she said.

An influx of people comes to Wadena for the state finals and motels become full. Last year, Linnes estimated thousands of people were in Wadena for the state competition. The VFW was filled on the outside and inside with people, she said.

Dates for the other competitions this summer are already set.

Preliminaries will be at 8 p.m. May 16, 22 and 30, and June 5 and 12, all at the Wadena VFW. More preliminaries will be at 8 p.m. May 23, and June 6 and 13, at Sebeka Liquor.

The semi-finals will be June 19, which is also the same day as the annual Town and Country breakfast at BN Park, the VFW Steak Fry and the parade.

The local finals will be July 18 at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Club in Wadena. The state finals will be either Sept. 5 or 6.

This is the fifth year the Colgate Country Showdown will be in Wadena and the second year for the state finals to be in Wadena, Linnes said. Organizers from Nashville, Tenn., thought the event in Wadena was great last year and wanted the finals to be here again this year, she said.

Colgate Country Showdown draws more people each year, she said, and now people just expect that Wadena will have the competitions.

Linnes is always looking for qualified people to judge the competitions and sometimes it can be difficult to find individuals, she said. If someone is interested, he or she can call Linnes at (218) 631-1803.