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Pumpkin donor named Friend of the Festival

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012 10:51 a.m. CST
Caption
(Photo provided)
Denis Jagodzinski is this year's Friend of the Sycamore Pumpkin Festival. Jagodzinski has donated pumpkins for children to decorate in the festival since 1986.

SYCAMORE – The Sycamore Pumpkin Festival Committee has selected Denis Jagodzinski as the 2012 Friend of the Festival.

Jagodzinski was born and raised in northern Illinois. The only time he left was to join the US Air Force, serving as a military policeman in Vietnam, the Philippines and Minot ND. He was discharged and moved to Rockford, where he worked for the Winnebago County Sheriffs Department. In 1979, Jagodzinski changed careers, joined American Family Insurance and moved to Sycamore. He is married to Jill and has two  children and two stepchildren.

Jagodzinski enjoys being active in the community as a member of the Sycamore Sportsman’s Club, Vietnow, VFW and Kiwanis. He is a past member of the Sycamore Jaycees and served as parade chairman in 1996 for the 35th parade.

Jagodzinski’s favorite part of the festival is the way the community gathers together.

“I really enjoy the kids, from the time they pick up pumpkins (which he has donated since 1986) until they are judged on the courthouse lawn,” he said. “I love the crowds and a beautiful, sunny October day. When the parade kicks off, it feels like a homecoming event, from the crowds gathering downtown where the community groups serve them to the parties’ homes both on and off the route. I’m so proud of our community and the way the clubs, organizations and the people come together to make our Sycamore Pumpkin Festival.”

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