Jaeger family celebrates ties at annual reunions

Error message

  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 133 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to get property 'settings' of non-object in _simpleads_adgroup_settings() (line 343 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 157 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in include() (line 24 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/templates/simpleads_ajax_call.tpl.php).

Christmas in July means winter coats, hats, scarves and a sleigh. All that was missing was the snow when the Jaeger family gathered last month for their annual reunion. (Photo submitted)

The house on Bluff Street where Albert and Lucille Jaeger lived. (Photo submitted)

By Shelia Tomkins 

"The family that plays together stays together" could be the motto of the Jaeger family, whose members gather each summer for a reunion weekend featuring plenty of fun, food and fellowship.

Each summer the many descendants of  the late Albert and Lucille Jaeger of Guttenberg come together to renew acquaintances and to enjoy a themed celebration.

"We just celebrated our 16th year," said Nancy (Scherbring) Schroeder, who recently recounted the history of the Jaeger gatherings. Their most recent reunion was in July, when the descendants camped in Elkport for a three-day weekend. Each year, a different committee plans activities and this year Nancy was on the committee. This year's theme was "A Blast From the Past — an Old-Fashioned Reunion." 

"For the past three years we have been doing family tours," said Nancy. On a Friday afternoon in July, approximately 30 members piled into a bus and van for a tour dubbed "A trip down memory lane." The first stop was St. Paula's Cemetery in rural Guttenberg to visit family graves, followed by lunch at Breitbach's in Balltown, and a tour of the North Buena Vista Cemetery to visit more  graves. Then it was on to Guttenberg for a city tour and to stop at a place that held many special memories for the family — the house where "Grandpa and Grandma" Jaeger resided, located on Bluff Street. The Jaeger grandchildren recalled many happy gatherings there for holidays. This year they decided to recreate a Christmas memory with a family sleigh ride photo, complete winter attire. "At Christmas, Grandpa and Grandma used to send us kids outside to sleigh ride on the hill; it was a family tradition," recalled Nancy. 

The Hines family now lives in the home, and the Jaegers were invited in by Monica Hines.  "We were really pleased that she let us come in to take a tour, especially my aunts and uncle — she really made their day," said Nancy. 

On Saturday the family enjoyed more fun activities in Elkport — a 5K run in the morning, a crutch race using tree branches, a walker race and supper in the ball park followed by a ballgame. "We are an active group," said Nancy with a smile.

Sunday's highlight was a big family potluck dinner at the Elkport Garber Community Center, with probably 150 attending. 

Three years ago, Nancy recalls, the theme was "A Redneck Family Reunion," and a the bus tour took them on a cemetery tour to Monona, Guttenberg, St. Donatus, Dubuque, Dyersville and Petersburg. "We had a prayer service at each, placed flowers and took family pictures at gravesites," said Nancy. "Not too many people take a party bus to a cemetery!"

For their 15th year reunion, a special project was a Jaeger family cookbook featuring many beloved recipes from the many good cooks in the family. Those interested in owning a cookbook can inquire at Blooming Branches in Guttenberg. 

Family history

Albert and Lucille Jaeger were the parents of eleven children, and four are still living — Rita Kregel, Norma Engelken, Robert Jaeger and Roland Jaeger. Deceased siblings are Lorraine Wolter, Dorothy Cole, George Jaeger, Donald Jaeger, Joseph Jaeger, Evelyn Scherbring and Raymond Jaeger. Albert and Lucille had 54 grandchildren. Albert died in 1977 and Lucille in 1986. 

Rate this article: 
No votes yet