Steve and Sue Kappel named 2018 Fiesta Days Grand Marshals
Fiesta Days has been a long-standing tradition in Vacaville. It is a tradition rooted in the building of memories, dreams, and friendships. Ask any longtime resident of Vacaville about Fiesta Days and you are sure to get a story!
Part of this tradition is the choosing of the Grand Marshals. We are honored to have Steve and Sue Kappel preside over the 61st Annual Fiesta Days celebration.
Steve arrived at Travis AFB in 1965 and moved to Vacaville shortly thereafter. Sue followed Steve from Iowa to California and the two were married in 1967. In 1972, Steve founded Kappel & Kappel Real Estate. Steve has been an active member of our community, serving as President of many organizations including Vacaville Chamber of Commerce and Vacaville Rotary.
Sue Kappel shares her memories of this much-anticipated celebration:
Fiesta has always been one of the highlights of our lives and some of our most precious memories. I have to admit, however, that things have changed a bit over the years and the participants aren’t as wild and crazy as they were “back in the day”.
One of my cherished memories was the Chamber of Commerce Dance Party on the Friday night before the parade. As part of the celebration, a hole was dug in the ground at Andrews Park and a whole roasted pig cooked overnight. The dance was held outside under the stars. Everyone was dressed in Western gear and many of the men wore holsters with guns attached. Bullets were all blanks of course. Occasionally, toward the end of the evening, there would actually be a “shoot-out” -Pretty exciting!
Everyone would get into the spirit of Fiesta Days. One year during Fiesta Week, as Steve was walking down the street in his western gear, two cowboys jumped out of a van and started shooting (blanks) at Steve. He ducked into the building and started shooting back. They ran out, jumped in their van and took off. Our secretary was hysterical and hiding under her desk.
The rest of us were overcome with laughter. I’m sure it created quite a stir in town. Steve still says that was one of his fondest memories.
In the past, when the parade went down Main St., we always participated in the event by opening up our office and providing food and beverages. The front office was always packed with viewers on their folding lawn chairs. Frequently, when the floats would drive by (especially the one with our local dignitaries-Assemblymen, County Supervisors etc) some would jump off
and run into the office to get their refreshments and then climb back on the float and continue on down the street. It was a tradition. We also participated in many of the floats involving the
local High Schools and Steve frequently marched as a member of the Sheriff’s Air Squadron.
We always looked forward to this event and one year I was pregnant and the baby was due on the day that the parade was scheduled. I was somewhat distraught about missing the parade but as luck would have it, baby “P.J.” arrived two weeks early and we both got to attend the event. At two weeks old, P.J. Kappel, was featured in his infant seat in the front window of our office where
he drew a lot of attention. Both of our boys have fond memories of this event, and now our grandchildren get to attend.
We are so honored to be chosen as your “Grand Marshals” for the 2018 event this year and look forward to representing you and our Community in the Best possible manner and to help make this a Great & Memorable Fiesta Days-creating Memories, Dreams and