Place item was collected
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
My name is Terin Crane. I am an undergraduate student at Utah State University pursuing a degree in English Teaching. I was born and raised in Mayfield, Utah, and then moved to Axtell, Utah when I was sixteen years old, where I currently live. I have had the privilege of traveling to New York City, Washington D.C., and San Francisco because of my involvement with the Upward Bound Program. I was Co-Valedictorian with my best friend when I graduated high school. I love reading and analyzing literature, as well as sharing funny things with my friends.
The Young Women’s Bake Sale occurs at the annual Axtell Pioneer Day Celebration on Pioneer Day (July 24th). Each young woman is required to bake two items to be sold, but more are welcomed. The majority of the ward and the Axtell community bring trailers, trucks, four-wheelers, hammocks, and canopies to the event. It is a huge deal that no one misses. The bidding wars that occur at the Bake Sale are infamous and are talked about by people until the next one where they are brought up before the new bake sale. In 2014, I was a young woman who actually participated in the bake sale, so I got to see first hand what this was all about. Normally when I tell this story, I am telling it to people who did not attend the bake sale or those who are not familiar with the Axtell tradition. I enjoy telling these people because I get to see their disbelief and their awe. It’s not as fun to tell my family that has attended because they already know, but when I am in a reminiscing mood, it is fun for everyone and there is normally lots of laughter.
“For the past three years, my family has attended the Axtell First Ward Annual Pioneer Day Celebration at Anthony’s Flatt. The entire community goes up to Anthony’s Flatt, some camp with their families and others just take four-wheelers up for the day. There is always a big pot-luck, planned by Bishop Otten and his wife, as well as the Relief Society Presidency. We have potato salad, macaroni salad, rolls, baked beans, potato chips, and sloppy joes. After the dinner that takes place at 5 PM, the Young Women’s Bake Sale commences. Each year, the young women do the bake sale as their fundraiser for money to pay for their activities throughout the coming year. The community loves to help out, so this is a great way to raise funds. Anyways, there is always a bidding war between Lonnie and Bishop. They just keep bidding one after the other trying to jack up the price for the other one before they back up, all the while giving money to a good cause. One year, the price for a loaf of the Bishop’s wife’s bread [it really is good bread because she is an incredible baker] went over $200! Needless to say, the bake sale is always a success.”
My recollection of this celebration was met with a grimace of disgust concerning the sloppy joes because I really hate sloppy joes, and baked beans, and macaroni salad. I find it funny and cannot help but laugh and shake my head when I envision the bidding wars that take place between Lonnie and Bishop. My family and I, and most of the Axtell community, are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We have a strong sense of service and love for others because of it. This story is often met with disbelief when I get to the price of Bishop’s wife’s bread because no one believes that a loaf could go for over $200, nor would anyone pay that. My voice often goes up in pitch when I get to that part of the story because I too find it crazy. It makes me happy to know that there are people out there who like to banter and tease each other, but who also care about helping out their community’s financial needs. I love this tradition because instead of watching parades and playing at the fairgrounds, the community comes together and chooses to be together on a day that is essential to our background.
Dr. Lynne McNeill
Semester and year
Crane, Terin, "Young Women's Bake Sale" (2018). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 535.