By McKenzie Williams
Logger Days has been held since 1960 making this year’s event the 60th annual Logger Days celebration. Intended originally to show off Libby’s logging industry and heritage, it is now Libby’s longest running community celebration.
In 1960, locals organized the first Logger Days which included logging competitions, a raft race, a parade, and a carnival. Logger Days has remained one of Libby’s most popular events, and even with economic and industrial changes that have occurred throughout the years, it helps Libby to remember and celebrate its logging heritage.
According to loggerdays.org, “Logger Days are important for keeping focus on the land surrounding Libby and its effect on the local economy. Without this annual festival, awareness and knowledge for residents and locals alike would diminish and, over time, fade away.”
Libby Logger Days was held on Friday and Saturday, June 22 and 23 with a Jack and Jill softball game on Sunday, June 24.
With attendance levels around 2,500 to 3,000, not including kids 12 and under who entered for free, Logger Days was full of community members. If you didn’t make it to this year’s event, then you missed out on some unique and fun ways to celebrate.
Every year the celebration features lawnmower races. For lawnmower racing, there is just one main rule: mowers must have been designed and sold commercially to mow residential lawns. Mowers can then be modified for the race to make them faster and easier to control around the race track. This year’s rain made the lawnmower races a muddy, fast, and exhilarating event of lawnmower engineering.
As for this year’s logging events, DLW Timberworks Lumberjack Show, a touring exhibition group out of Wisconsin brought chainsaws, sawdust, and a blend of sports, history and good family comedy supplying attendees with an exciting, entertaining, and nostalgic logging competition. They held a number of events, which included; hot sawing, speed carving, relay racing, axe throwing, speed climbing, log rolling, spring board chopping, underhand chopping, and single buck.
To finish Logger Days off with a bang, one of the town’s favorite events was held: Bull and Bullette of the Woods. The event lets anyone who is at least 18 years old have an opportunity to show off there muscles. The event costs $25 to participate in, but the winner gets $500 cash.
A giant, short, very round log is placed front and center in the arena surrounded by piles of sawdust for a safer fall. This year, nine men and five woman stepped up to the challenge where two competitors at a time put on boxing gloves and attempt to punch their opponent off the log for a chance at full pockets and a year’s worth of bragging rights. This year’s winners were Josh Chumley and Amanda Montgomery.
The fun didn’t shop there, when Logger Days events ended, The Hankers, a band from Oakesdale, Washington rocked the evening away while carnival-goers enjoyed the beer garden, rides, games and shopping at the many vendor booths.
Make sure not to miss next year’s 61st Annual Logger Days.
(picture) A little lady is caught getting her groove on at this year’s Logger Days while listening to The Hankers. Photo by McKenzie Williams, The Montanian.
Bull and Bullette of the Woods
Top: Josh Chumley, winner of Bull of the Woods, defeats his competitor by punching him off of the log.
Bottom: Amanda Montgomery winner of Bullette of the Woods after she beat out the other women in the competition. Photos by McKenzie Williams, The Montanian.
Timberworks Lumberjack Show
Log Rolling ladies splash and roll to try and get the other person off of the log two out of three times to claim the event championship. Photo courtesy of Danial Sorenson.