Sturgis Falls Celebration

228 Maryhill Drive
Cedar Falls, IA 50613


The Sturgis Falls Celebration Board of Directors is pleased to announce the 44th annual Sturgis Falls Celebration, “Happy Trails” themed Dignitary and Poster Artist.

For 2019, the Cedar Trails Partnership (CTP) will be honored as the sole dignitary entity for the Celebration. Established in 1995 as a 501c3 non-profit organization, representatives from the partnership began attending meetings and public hearings of the Metropolitan Transportation Planning Organization (MPO) in order to stay informed about trail funding opportunities. The focus of the CTP has remained on trail advocacy, with a representative serving on the MPO, its technical committee and enhancement committee, as well as organizing the annual trails festival and the volunteer Cedar Trail Patrol, which provides security and assistance to trail users.

Alyssa Schmidt has been named the 2019 Poster Artist. Ms. Schmidt was inspired by her time on the trails as a member of the Cedar Falls High School Track and Cross Country Teams. She had a true sense of community while using the trails. Ms. Schmidt is a 2017 CFHS graduate and is studying Graphic Design at Hawkeye Community College.

Sturgis Falls Celebration History:

The Sturgis Falls Celebration grew out of the 1976 Cedar Falls, Iowa Bicentennial Celebration. It is named after William Sturgis, who founded the community of Sturgis Falls in 1845 when he settled here with his family. (William’s claim encompassed most of what is now downtown Cedar Falls.) In 1850, the name was changed to Cedar Falls. When searching for an appropriate name for an annual Cedar Falls Celebration, it seemed fitting to once more honor the man who first settled this great community.

The United States Bicentennial was the impetus for planning that first Citywide celebration. To celebrate the United States Bicentennial, each State established a committee to organize the cities in their state. The State of Iowa’s Bicentennial Committee appointed a person from each of the 99 counties. The Committee chair from Black Hawk County requested the Junior League in Black Hawk County organize the Black Hawk County cities. The Black Hawk County Co-Chairs were Wilma Paup and Jean Dobson. The Cedar Falls Bicentennial Committee consisted of many people, including Tom Klemuk, Chairman; Judith Cutler, Vice Chairman; Rosemary Rasmussen Beach, Secretary; and Trenna King, Treasurer. This committee organized the Bicentennial Celebration for Cedar Falls, the plans for which began in 1975. This Celebration became what is now known as the Sturgis Falls Celebration.

The organizers of the 1976 Celebration enlisted the support of individuals, local organizations, city government, the Chamber of Commerce, the University of Northern Iowa, and the State of Iowa. Working together, they planned a one-time event, an event that made such an enormous impact and received such positive support from the community that they did it every year since.

The Sturgis Falls Celebration incorporated in 1985, acquired non-profit status and created an all-volunteer board of directors. Each board member has specific responsibilities which he or she oversees during the course of the year as well as during the Sturgis Falls Celebration weekend, i.e. entertainment, parade, publicity, street fair, memorabilia, food and beverage, etc. Since its beginning, 95 community members have served on the board with over 340 years of Sturgis volunteer experience.

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