One special ‘Corn Days’ event revealed

Deb Moldaschel
Do you need this shirt? (Yes, you do.) There is only one way to get it -- sign up for the Sleepy Eye 2020 Security Blanket 5K!

The 59th Annual Buttered Corn Days Celebration was supposed to happen on Aug. 20 and 21. But a few wrenches have been thrown into the works.

First, just after last year’s celebration, Del Monte stunned the community with the news that the 2019 canning season would be their last in Sleepy Eye. The Sleepy Eye Area Chamber of Commerce, organizers of Corn Days, were only slightly daunted and announced there would still be Buttered Corn Days in Sleepy Eye. Chamber Executive Director, Christina Andres, said they even had a source for the sweet corn!

What could go wrong?

What else — COVID-19. Just like so many other big events this summer, the big Corn Days celebration and parade, that draws crowds of people to Sleepy Eye, had to be canceled.

Wait, no, it isn’t canceled — it is just reimagined.

The Chamber Board has been busy brainstorming ideas on ways to celebrate Sleepy Eye’s Buttered Corn Days. They envision things such as virtual events, Facebook LIVE music, and local businesses offering corn-themed options. (Stay tuned for what the Herald-Dispatch has in mind for our own Corn Days celebration!)

Last week, Andres revealed the first new Corn Days event — the Sleepy Eye 2020 Security Blanket Virtual 5K.

What’s a virtual 5K? It’s a 5K run (or walk) that you complete on your own time, on any course you like. Of course, for your convenience, the Sleepy Eye Lake Trail just happens to fit the bill (5K is 3.1 miles and the trail is 3.12 miles.)

Andres said entrants must complete their 5K the week of Aug. 17 to 23. They should track their walk/run time and share the results to the Security Blanket 5K Facebook page.

The Security Blanket Virtual 5K is a fundraiser to help make up for the revenue lost to the cancellation of the usual Corn Days events. The entry fee is $35 and that gets you a finisher’s medal and an extra-special Security Blanket 5K t-shirt.

The artwork on the t-shirt features Linus and Snoopy of “Peanuts” fame. Cartoonist Charles Schultz created his Linus character after his art school friend, Linus Maurer of Sleepy Eye. That link got Sleepy Eye its own Linus statue. Now through a licensing agreement, the Chamber offers the Security Blanket 5K t-shirts — Snoopy, blanket, and Linus — to those who register for the Sleepy Eye 2020 Security Blanket Virtual 5K.

Andres has advice for anyone who just has to have that cute t-shirt: “Sign up right away, our license only allowed us to make 150 shirts and this is the only way to get one!”

To register for this event, go to the Sleepy Eye Area Chamber of Commerce & CVB Facebook page and click on events. The link to register for the 5K is found there. You can also email Andres at for assistance with registration.