President Bush in Person-2004

President George W. Bush arrived in Chanhassen, Minnesota, on Saturday, October 9th, 2004.  It's the closest that a President of the United States has ever been to Victoria, Minnesota -- as far as I know.  In any case, we decided to drive the seven miles to see him and hear him.  It was an educational and inspirational day with a gorgeous blue sky and temperatures approaching 80 degrees. 

"Hail, hail, the gang's all here ..."

We ended up being only 45 feet from President Bush during his stump speech so my camera got a good workout.  Although I could have acquired a Press Pass, and did in fact acquire VIP tickets, I chose instead to be with the multitudes and had the best seat in the house ... I mean, in the park.

As we walked the two short blocks from the Target parking lot, we were greeted by members of the Carver County Sheriff's Mounted Posse Patrol.  That's Marjorie Adams on the left.  Many human and equine members of the patrol graced the streets of Chanhassen this balmy afternoon.

Each visitor was required to walk through one of the dozen or so checkpoints where purses were  opened and magic wands checked every body for evidence of terrorist or disruptive intention.

The lines moved fast and nobody seemed annoyed by anything.

Hi, Bud Olson, Sheriff of Carver County.  Thank you for keeping everyone in line!

Although President Bush wasn't scheduled to speak until 3:15 p.m., people began arriving long before lunch time.  We got there about 11 a.m.

This chicken and ice cream station always had the longest and most popular line.

We ate hot polish sausage piled high with sauerkraut, mustard, and ketchup.  Mmmmm.  And then later we had licorice and corndogs.  Mmmmm.

We did not buy Bush t-shirts, but I bought three Bush buttons for $10.

This area also attracted visitors.

I'm thinking that all the Bush paraphernalia -- t-shirts, buttons, posters, and flags -- must have been housed and hauled in this large colorful trailer.

The crowd included lots of kids and babies in strollers.

Just like at the Carver County Fair and the Minnesota State Fair and other large gatherings, the Red Cross was on hand to help if necessary.

It was like a huge picnic with 20,000 friends.

There were many flag-wavers in the crowd.

Hi, Mike and Tricia Drazan of Victoria!

Hi, Mary Moore of Victoria!

Hi, Dallas and Karen Notermann of Victoria!

Hi, Dan Workman and daughter Ann Raser of Chaska!

Hi, Don Dahl of Victoria!

Hi, Jenny, Chris and Addie Sue Norgaard of Northfield!

As the band played on, and  3 o'clock got closer, we were told that the presidential motorcade was visible on Highway 5.

Anticipation was high and I caught some of it by holding my camera directly above me and just clicking away without being able to see what was getting clicked.  Who's that guy in the middle?

Why, it's Allan Orsen of Victoria -- getting even more sunburnt.

Little girls rode on their daddy's shoulders to look for the President.

Standing in the front, off the right with the Legion cap on, is former Representative K.J. McDonald of Watertown, and his wife.  Just up from him, the tall thin fellow, is former Representative Tom Workman of Chanhassen.

And then President Bush and First Lady Laura arrived.  The crowd of well-wishers was ecstatic.

President Bush thanked us for coming, and he spoke highly of Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman and Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty and other conservative Minnesota politicians.

President Bush spoke against federal funding for the murder of our children by abortion.  One out of every four pregnancies in America now ends in abortion.

He spoke about trying to prevent terror attacks by hunting down terrorists.

He spoke against embryonic stem cell research because it means procuring the parts of babies for research, and the end never ever justifies the means.

He spoke about being in favor of allowing less expensive drugs to come into our country from Canada, but not until he knows the drugs are safe for the American people and are not being rerouted from clandestine facilities.

He said the people of Iraq have been freed from torture chambers and rape rooms.

He spoke about maintaining marriage as the sacred institution between a man and a woman.

Editor Sue was part of this historic event that occurred a few short miles from her home in Victoria.

The End

Love, Sue