As I am approaching my 12th year as a member of the Syttende Mai committee, I have a concern that I wanted to share with you.

When I first became a committee member, there were a fair amount of people on the committee. If memory serves me, there were 10 to 12 people, and they all were involved with specific functions during the celebration, and they also were committed to the monthly meetings.

As the years passed, some of them retired, some moved from the area and others were just plain burned out.

Then came a couple of years where we had as little as four members on the committee, but they persevered, and we still had celebrations that we were proud of.

A couple of years ago, we had a number of people that committed themselves to Syttende Mai. But the member numbers were never very high, and some of the new members have left because of the reasons listed above.

The remaining committee has dedicated its efforts to continuing to provide a top-notch celebration. But the toll is starting to take its effect.

While serving on the committee, we have all heard the good, and we have heard the bad. The one thing is that all of the suggestions are by people from the area.

We know that Syttende Mai could have additional attractions, the issue is now that the Executive Committee members who meet each month to plan the celebration are reduced, they have had to man ticket sale areas, oversee multiple events and coordinate them, and perform other functions during the weekend.

Not only is this exhausting, but there is absolutely no time to enjoy the celebration with our families and reap some small benefit of our yearly labors.

This is what prompted me to write this letter. I have served as vice president and also held the office of president. Recently, I was happily demoted back to the office of vice president, as Corey Anderson has relieved me at the helm of the Executive Committee.

I still have excitement over the energy that the current members of the Executive Committee bring to each monthly meeting.

But, I also have seen that if more people don't come forward in some fashion, their energy will also be consumed, and they may leave before they are completely burnt out.

So, I am asking each citizen to look at their schedule, remember the fun you have had at the past celebrations, and make a commitment to help us out.

Whether that is to join the Executive Committee and attend the monthly meetings, which are held on the first Sunday of each month at the Log Cabin in Viking Park on Main St. at 6 p.m. or contact a committee member and let us know that you would be able to help on Syttende Mai weekend to sell buttons, staff an event or help prior to the event with setup.

We do need your help desperately, and thanks!

Paul Folz, Spring Grove

Submitted on behalf of the Syttende Mai Executive Committee