INMAN — Inman’s Santa Fe Days, scheduled for Sept. 23 this year, will feature a return of traditional elements that make the event fun for all, including some activities that have not been seen for a few decades.

To kick off the event, a contest was held to select a theme for the parade.

Out of 30 entries to the contest, Amy Voorhis’s submission of “Celebrating 130 Years of Tradition” was the winning entry and will give residents a focus on hometown history and pride.

Though this is the 130th anniversary of the founding of Inman, that was not the town’s first name.

“Inman wasn’t Inman originally, it was Aiken,” Diane Miller, Santa Fe Days coordinator. “The name was changed to Inman after Major Inman, who was a Civil War hero.”

The parade, which will take place at 10 a.m. on Sept. 23, will award winners in two categories — Best Float and Best Decorated Golf Cart.

“The prizes for the parade are blue ribbons — big, honking cow-type blue ribbons,” Miller said.

Miller was especially enthusiastic about an activity that will require creativity from participants.

“We are returning to another tradition, and that is the round straw bale decorating contest,” Miller said.

To enter the contest, teams or individuals will pay a fee of $10. Round straw bales will be provided and set up horizontally or vertically as requested. Teams of people can enter, but at least one member must have an Inman mailing address. Registrations for the round straw bale decorating contest, available at the city office at 104 S. Main, must be received by Sept. 15. The winner, determined by popular vote, wins half of the pot of collected entry fees.

Tickets for a 50/50 drawing, which is a fundraiser for the Inman Chamber of Commerce, are currently available at Raleigh Insurance, 201 S. Main St. in Inman.

“Whatever is in the pot at the end of the fishing derby, you get half and the chamber gets the rest,” Miller said.

Art in the Park II will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. in Lambert Park, located near East Center Street and Park Lane. The afternoon will see artists setting up their work for viewing and sale in the park.

“I’m expecting we’ll have at least 20 artists again this year,” Miller said.

Other Santa Fe Days activities will include a blacksmithing demonstration, fun run, basket auction, sidewalk chalk art, ice cream social, inflatables, children’s cash scramble, fishing derby, author signings, tractor pull and more.

Vendors will be selling food options like brats, snow cones and Krispy Kreme donuts.

“We’ll make it as great as it possibly can be, because that’s our tradition,” Miller said.

For more information about Santa Fe Days, contact Diane Miller at or 620-585-2670.

Contact Patricia Middleton by email at or follow her stories on Twitter at @MacSentinel.