Kaden Felde wrote his essay about his grandpa Darrell McIalwain, who died earlier this year. Kaden wrote that he will always remember his grandpa telling him, “As long as you do your best, your best is good enough for me.”


Kanabec-area youth wrote some very truthful, sometimes tearful and sometimes hilarious things about the seniors they love in the 2020 Kanabec County Fair’s Senior Citizen/Grandparent Essay Contest. Despite the fair being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the fair board and judges decided to proceed with accepting essay entries. Finding it hard to choose three winners, the judges awarded all participants with a $10 gift card. 

Excerpts from those essays below give a glimpse into the influence seniors have had on Kanabec County’s sixth graders. 

Grandma Grace and Grandpa Bob

I like to call him Papa. He always takes me to get donuts at the bakery. He always helps me with my math when I am having trouble and he is there to watch Lifetime movies with me.

Something I love about her is when I do something right she always says “Good Job!” When I do something wrong, she will tell me and give me a chance to fix it. She is an amazing grandma and I do not know what I would do without her! 

— Olivia T. 

My Inspirational Grandma Heidi

I know that having 12 kids is not easy but my grandma never made it seem that way. She was and is such a busy lady and never really lets herself sit down ....

Overall through all of the tough times my grandma has had she really has persevered and made the best of a bad situation.

So to sum it up, my grandma is one of the strongest people I know. She makes everyone feel special, always gives them the love they deserve and stays persistent in everything that she does. She deserves the world and more and has so much love for everybody she knows. 

— Abigail K. 

Senior Citizen Essay: Lloyd Stegman

He was such a big inspiration to me and taught me to fight for the things I wanted; in his case he fought for America ... 

He taught me about how in life you have to fight for what is right and he was a fighter and wasn’t going to let Hitler rule America. To this day I wonder what America would be like if it wasn’t for him ... 

— Landry S. 

My Grandma

My grandma played a large part in raising, and making me who I am today. I am very grateful for her looking after me for all those years, and I love her very much.

— Maddalynn D. 

My Grandpa

A man once told me, “As long as you do your best, your best is good enough for me.” These were the words of my grandpa that I will always remember. 

— Kaden Felde 

Grandparents Jim and Joy

My oldest cousin doesn’t like to play Mexican train by my grandpa because one time he kept adding tiles                        when she was not looking. Now when we play games, we make sure that my grandpa is not cheating. It is funny —we will be playing a game, and he will just fall asleep. When we go to turn off the TV, he wakes up and goes, “I was watching that!” even though he wasn’t even watching it. 

— Brady N. 

My Grandpa Mark

Now that they’ve moved away, I wish they still lived next door. My grandpa says he treasures that I have patience for him and his questions that he asks me. I think it’s important to me that I act just like him and that he’s my grandpa.

— Aiden S. 

Grandma’s quilts

My grandma is one of the sweetest people I know. She always cares about how I’m doing and always making sure I’m having fun ... 

My whole family has quilts on their beds made by my grandma. She also made us rag quilts that we cuddle with, when we are under the blanket it feels like a hug from my grandma.

— Ruby B.  

Papa Brent

If you asked me to describe my papa, I would say he is a very hard working, caring and most of all —goofy. He is always telling jokes, but they are not always that funny (don’t tell him that). What makes me laugh though is his silly laugh after telling the joke. He giggles like a boy pleased with his joke and you can’t help but laugh too. It could be a rainy day and he’ll always find the best in everything. He does a little skip and jump when he is excited or is trying to get someone else excited about something.

— Kaydence P. 


(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.