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Grotto volunteer day is Saturday

West Bend attraction prepares for 100th anniversary celebration

April 22, 2012
By JOE SUTTER, Messenger staff writer , Messenger News

WEST BEND - The Grotto of the Redemption is gearing up for its 100th anniversary in June, so of course the staff wants the place looking its best. But even if there were no special events, it's time for a little spring cleaning, said Grotto Director Darcie Kramer.

The second annual volunteer workday is set to begin at 9 a.m. Saturday. Kramer said one of the big projects would be some landscaping around the pond.

"There's some bushes that will get pulled out and replaced with some smaller bushes and trees," she said. "They're pretty old and keep getting overgrown, and growing through the fence. The new ones will be smaller, easier to maintain, and add some color to pretty-up the landscaping."

Article Photos

-Messenger file photo
Grotto Executive Director Darcie Kramer looks over the Sermon on the Mount at the Grotto of the Redemption in this file photo. At Saturday’s cleanup, volunteers will replace bushes, sweep out the grottos, and get the grounds cleaned up for the summer season.

There will also be some general cleanup, including sweeping out the Grottos, weeding in other gardens, and washing windows.

Kramer said the work would likely continue until noon, but it depends on how many people help. The work day is a good chance for students making their confirmation this year who need volunteer or community service hours, she said.

Volunteers should call ahead to sign up, she said. The number to call is (800) 868-3641.

Last year's volunteer day turned out to be rainy, so the volunteers repainted the office and finished other indoor chores, Kramer said. This year, the cleanup will be rescheduled for May 19 in case of rain.

The Grotto is expecting higher amounts of tourism this year due to the100th anniversary celebration from June 22-24. Kramer said things are starting to come together in preparation.

"We've started selling tickets for Remedy Drive, which is a Christian rock band. That's on Saturday night of the celebration," Kramer said. "We'll have a youth speaker Saturday night before the band; that is free.

"The campgrounds normally don't need reservations, but for this week they do. If people are wanting to camp they'll need to call and get a spot reserved."

Contact Joe Sutter at (515) 573-2141 or



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