Red River abuzz at Sawdust Day

Sportsmen’s club hosts annual woodcutting competition

Leader photo by Carol Ryczek Reynolds Buettner sweeps his saw down as club member Jeff Buettner watches. Jeff Buettner kept the competition moving by marking and positioning the logs.

April in Wisconsin: too cold to swim; too early to hunt. Mud, rain and wind. In other words, it’s perfect weather to make sawdust.

The Red River Sportsmen’s Club realized this seven years ago when they created the first Sawdust Day, and their celebration has been growing ever since. This year, they held Sawdust Day on April 6 and included chainsaw, crosscut saw and wood-splitting competitions.

Jim Szucs Jr., club secretary and one of the event organizers, acknowledged that the event “started as something to do this time of year and has grown more than we expected.”

Sawdust Day was held at the sportsmen’s club’s property just outside of Red River. Most of the afternoon focused on timed competitions using modern and antique chainsaws. At the end of the day, teams or couples used crosscut saws instead of gasoline-powered ones and, for anyone with energy left, piles of logs were set out to split by hand.

All of the entry fees were returned as prizes, Szucs said.

Competitors made their cuts on popple or pine logs, he said. The “Super Log” competition requires only one cut of a large pine log.

The cut wood was auctioned off at the end of the day.

In addition to the competition, responsibilities for the food, prizes and drawings were all taken on by club members, he said.

Although most of the participants were from the area, competitors came from as far away as Francis Creek. Szucs said he did not believe that the competitors do a lot of practice, though it was apparent from both the attention they gave to their saws and the quickness of the cuts that there were no beginners in the mix.

The winners of the competitions are:

Chainsaw classes (Times listed in seconds)

Mini 40cc, Dave Krajnik 7.0

46cc, Jeff Buettner 10.0

56cc, Dan Buettner 7.7

66cc, Reynolds Buettner 6.8

80cc, Dan Buettner 9.8

Women’s Powder Puff, Krista Buettner 6.5

Antique (1969 & older), Rick Brockman 4.5

Vintage Gear Drive, Dave Krajnik 5.15

Vintage Direct Drive, Dave Krajnik 10.0

Open Class, Rick Brockman 10.4

Super Log, Jim Szucs Jr. 21.3

Hotsaw, Dave Buettner 12.4

Women’s Common Saw, Julie Burr 10.4

Men’s Common Saw, Rick Brockman 7.9

Crosscut classes

Two-Man Crosscut Saw, Men, Dave & Kerry Krajnik 11.7

Two-Man Crosscut Saw, Women, Penny Kuhn & Julie Burr 30.3

Co-Ed, Dan Buettner & Bobbi Jo Ladwig 17.0

Wood Splitting

Dan Buettner 19.0