Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Rock ‘n rolling in Hamburg June 18, 2011

LAST SUNDAY MY HUSBAND and I drove into Hamburg, just because we’d never been there. It was along the meandering path we chose for our trip back to Faribault from west central Minnesota.

We didn’t hang around in Hamburg, simply went into town, turned around and drove back out. As we passed the community hall in this town of around 500, I snapped this photo. I appreciated the vintage look of the building and wondered how many times locals have gathered here to celebrate.

I imagined dance feet scuffing oak floors, brides launching bouquets, crepe paper streamers sagging from the ceiling, gray-haired ladies sipping coffee, accordions weaving in and out.

I did not imagine Rock ‘N Roll Wrestling. Who would?

But when I later did an online search of Hamburg, I discovered wrestling at the community hall. Surprise. Tonight wrestlers will rock the walls of the community hall as pro-wrestler Rock ‘N Roll Buck ZumHofe brings his wrestling show back to his hometown beginning at 7:30 p.m.

So much for my contemplative visions of a wedding reception and dance or a 50th wedding anniversary party, although I expect those are also part of this building’s history.

Tonight it’s all about wrestling, which I may have watched when I was a kid (and even as recently as 30 years ago.) Vern Gagne, Dr. X, The Crusher, and, yes, even Rock ‘N Roll Buck ZumHofe, are names I remember.

No, I won’t be in Hamburg tonight to relive my days of pro-wrestling devotion at this town’s annual Zummerfest celebration. My interest has vanished and is now limited to the occasional glimpse I catch of wrestlers when the guys in my house are flicking television channels.

However, I expect plenty of faithful fans to fill the old hall. If you wish you could be there but can’t make tonight’s gig, Rock ‘N Roll Wrestling will be in nearby Glencoe on June 25 and in Wabasha on June 26.

According to ZumHofe’s website, you’ll be treated to “old fashion fun wrestling in a format that is nostalgic as well as new and highly entertaining.”

DO YOU HAVE MEMORIES of watching pro-wrestling on television or in person? Do you still watch/attend these wrestling bouts?

AND IF YOU HAVE memories of the Hamburg Community Hall or know anything about its history, please submit a comment. I’d like to hear your stories.

© Copyright 2011 Audrey Kletscher Helbling