Caroline preparing for 34th Colorama

Event attracts horse enthusiasts, but equine not required for fun
Greg Seubert

What started out more than 30 years ago as a late-season horse ride has turned into an annual event that draws big crowds to a small Shawano County community each fall.

The Caroline Lions Club will hold its 34th Colorama Thursday, Sept. 29, to Sunday, Oct. 2, at W12721 Buss Road, just off of County Road G, in Caroline.

“I understand there were four or five (Lions Club) members that had horses and they thought they would give it a try,” event chairman and Caroline Lions Club president Jim Polzin said. “The first year, I think they had 100-some horses.”

Trails will be open for horse riding all four days.

Colorama also includes live music.

“We have a band Thursday night, Friday night and Saturday night,” Polzin said. “A lot of people come up just to camp and for the music. I’ll bet half the people that come here don’t have horses anymore.”

The entertainment lineup includes Bootjack Road (7:30 p.m. Sept. 29); the Brady Luke Band (8:30 p.m. Sept. 30); and Whiskey & Lace (8:30 p.m. Oct. 1).

The schedule for Sept. 29 includes food in the Lions building; a trail ride; vendors in the vendor area; and free admission to the Bootjack Road concert.

The schedule for Sept. 30 includes a trail ride; food and vendors; and the Brady Luke Band ($5 admission).

The Oct. 1 schedule includes a trail ride leaving from 10 a.m. to noon; a bean bag tournament at 12:30 p.m.; food and vendors; a Legion Auxiliary craft sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; horse-drawn wagon rides; and Feast with Frontier Friends at 6 p.m.

The Oct. 2 schedule includes a pancake breakfast from 7-10:30 a.m.; a trail ride at 9:30 a.m.; a parade at 1 p.m.; and auction following the parade; and a raffle drawing following the auction.

Shuttle rides will be available throughout the weekend.

Many people take advantage of Colorama’s campsites, Polzin said.

“We have almost 1,000 campsites,” he said. “Not everyone has campers. Some people get two, one for their camper and one for their horses.”

The Lions Club uses proceeds from Colorama to support area organizations.

“After the parade on Sunday, we have an auction and that money all goes to the Lions Camp in Rosholt,” Polzin said. “It goes right to the camp. We don’t keep any of it.”

Colorama is a highlight of the year for many Caroline residents, according to Polzin.

“This is pretty much their last ride of the year and they come and enjoy themselves,” he said. “There’s always stuff going on.”