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2014 Grand Marshals

Each year the Beef Days Committee selects 3 Grand Marshals for the celebration and honors them by having them in the parade.  (See more information below.)

Click here for parade information.

Beef Days Grand Marshall Dan Smith
Beef Days Grand Marshall: Dan Smith
Celebrity Grand Marshall: Mark Sovers
Celebrity Grand Marshall: Mark Sovers
Corner Stone Grand Marshall: Sandy Hanson
Corner Stone Grand Marshall: Sandy Hanson

Beef Days Grand Marshall Dan Smith

Dan Smith has been chosen as this year’s Solon Beef Days Grand Marshall of the 2014 Celebration.

Dan’s involvement of the Beef Day’s Committee began in the 70’s as parade chairman.  Dan held that role for several years and also served and committee
co-chair for 2 years.  Dan notes that he fondly remembers the Beef Days of yesteryear.
Dan is currently serving his 40th year as a member of the Solon Fire Department with 17 of those years (1996-2013) as fire chief.  Dan is recently retired his position a
battalion chief for the City of Iowa Fire Department.  Dan notes he is enjoying the pace of retirement.
Dan and his wife, Barb, have three children, Sarah Drea (Dave), Kristen Goldsberry (Ty) and Abbe Gravert (Jeremy) and four grandchildren, Merrick, Maddy, Grant and Shae.


Celebrity Grand Marshall Mark Sovers

Physical Education Teacher K-4 (19 years), Head Boys track and Field & Assistant Football coach

Mark is both honored and privileged to be the Varsity Boys track and field coach at Solon for the past 18 years. Over the years, the team has been very fortunate to represent Solon on and off the track – trying and show what a great community we live in.

Mark would like to thank the community for the big role they play in providing opportunities for the Spartans to have a very successful season this year. The opportunity to win a State Track title does not happen without a solid foundation and the efforts of great people. The community of Solon is a great example of this.

The athletes work extremely hard and are asked to make many sacrifices along the way. Mark thanks you for all that you do, not only the current athletes but graduated athletes as well. The success of the Spartans, an and off the field is truly about you.


Cornerstone Grand Marshall Sandy Hanson

Sandy has been chosen as this year’s Solon Beef Days Corner Stone Grand Marshall of the 2014 Celebration. This special recognition is awarded to Sandy for her involvement in community activities and events that have made a positive impact on the Solon community and surrounding area.

Calling Solon home since 1973, Sandy and husband Jerry live north of Solon on Hwy 1 and have hosted a 4th of July antique show for many years on their acreage. Sandy retired from the University of Iowa Hospitals after 50 years in pediatric nutrition research yet her work continues serving the Solon community. Sandy has been a volunteer at the Solon Library since 1996 and serves on the Library Foundation Board.

Sandy also serves on the Solon Historical Commission led the Solon Snapshots history book project recording history from 1850-1950. Sandy actively serves the senior community with her work on the Senior Advocates and Old Gold Dining. Sandy spearheaded the community into action and organized the Solon Food Pantry now open on Mondays in the Solon United Methodist Church. If that isn’t enough to keep a person busy, Sandy is also organizing an event to celebrate Solon’s 175th anniversary in September 2015.

Sandy and Jerry’s family includes: sons Dave (Laurie)Eash, Duane (Georgia) Eash and daughter Kim Hertel (Steve Stone) and four grandchildren, Josh, Ezra, Jessica and Michelle.

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2014 Beef Days Bean Bag Tournament

Register online now for entry into the 2014 Beef Days Bean Bag Tournament, proceeds to benefit the Solon Wrestling.

Tournament starts at 1:00 pm Saturday, July 19th.  There will be registration near the hay bale toss Friday night.

Team entry fee is $30, enter below.

Bean Bag tournament rules:

  • 2 person teams
  • One team member on each end
  • One team member on each side of the board
  • Contestant must throw from behind the foul line
  • Players on the same end (opposite teams) alternate turns throwing
  • First team to reach 21 wins: 3 points for bag through the hole, 1 point for bag landing on board
  • Points cancel each other: if Team A scores 5 points and Team B scores 3 then Team A officially scores 2 points
  • Bags that hit the ground before landing on the board are considered a foul throw and must be removed before the next throw. Bags count if they are hanging over the edge of the board. If they are hanging over the front but touching the ground, a wrestler will lift the board up to see if the bag stays on or falls off before scoring is calculated
  • The last team to score throws first
  • If the board moves as a result of a throw it will be re-positioned after the last throw of the turn and before the next bags are thrown
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2014 Beef Days 5K & 1 Mile Run

Beef Days 5K & 1 Mile Run

Race Time: 1 Mile 7:30 a.m. 5K 8:00 a.m.


Registration & Cost:

Online registration is now closed – but race registration is available Saturday morning.

Here is a printable entry form to post or fill out an mail.

Registration is in the St. Mary’s Catholic Church parking lot.

Individual Pricing:
Solon Students K-12 $7.00
Family* Pricing Option…..$40.00; Add’l Family Member…..$5.00
*(Family indicates 4 related individuals with the same primary residence)

Course & Parking:

Course maps:
The Beef Days Run Committee was looking for an alternative route and that didn’t work out for this year – so the 2013 route will be the same as in past years.

Beef Days Race Map

Parking: Solon Recreation and Nature Area

Strollers welcome. Sorry- no dogs allowed


Medals to the top three male & female finishers in each age division.

Trophies will be awarded to the top male & female finishers in each race.

Age Divisions:

1 Mile: Under 5, 5-6, 7-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-15, 16-18, 19 & up

5K: Under 15, 15-18, 19-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 & up

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2014 Schedule of Events

July 18th & 19th, 2014

Ribeye Steak Dinners
Served 4:30pm to 9 pm Friday and 11:30 am to 1:30 pm and 4:30 pm to 8:30 pm Saturday

Beer Tent
Miller Lite, Coors Lite, Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy, Fat Tire Ale and Mike’s Hard Lemonade
Friday 4 pm to 12:30 am
Saturday 11 am to 12:30 am (Sunday)

Carnival on the Midway
Unlimited rides with wristband purchase on Friday night

Friday July 18

  • 5:00 pm – Lady Lowe (Facebook)
  • 6:00 pm – Adult Kickball Tournament @ Legion Field
  • 6:00 pm – Solon Dance Team (Kid’s Corner)
  • 6:30 pm – Pedal Tractor Pull (Registration @ 5:30 – Kid’s Corner)
  • 7:00 pm – Hay Bale Toss
  • 9:00 pm – Back Home Boys

Saturday July 19

  • 7:30 am – Beef Days 5K and 1 Mile Fun Run (Registration @ 6:30)
  • 10:00 am – Parade (Lineup 9:00 am)
  • 11:00 am – Riverbottom Ramblers
  • 11:30 am – Optimist Fishing Derby @ Brosh’s Pond
  • Noon – Adult Kickball Tournament @ Legion Field
  • Noon – Youth Kickball Tournament at Recreation and Nature Area ball diamonds
    (Team registration will begin at 11:30 am)
  • Noon – Horseshoe Tournament @ Randall Park
  • Noon – Gunny the Clown (Kid’s Corner)
  • 12:30 pm – Face painting (Kid’s Corner)
  • 12:45 p.m. – Paper Airplane Toss (Registration @ 12:30 – Kid’s Corner)
  • 1:00 pm – Fireman’s Waterball Fight (@ Randall Park)
  • 1:00 pm – Bags Tournamnet
  • 1:45 p.m. – Big Wheel Races (Registration @ 1:30 – Kid’s Corner)
  • 2:00 pm – Terry McCauley (Facebook)
  • 2:45 p.m. – Juggler Doug Sayers (Kid’s Corner)
  • 3:30 pm – Future Firefighters Waterball Contest at new City Hall
    (Registration at 2 pm)
  • 7:00 pm – The Fez : A Tribute to Steely Dan (Facebook)
  • 9:45 pm – Car Raffle Drawing
  • 10:00 pm – The Pork Tornadoes (Facebook)
fez - steely dan tribute band
The Fez – A Tribute to Steely Dan
Saturday night @ 7:00


The Pork Tornadoes -
The Pork Tornadoes – Saturday Night @ 10:00 pm