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History comes to life for Winona Middle School sixth-graders

Winona Middle Schoolers Cemetery Walk

Lee Gundersheimer plays Daniel Sinclair.

The entire sixth-grade class at Winona Middle School took part in the Voices from the Past Cemetery Walk on Friday morning at Woodlawn Cemetery. 

The annual event is presented by the Winona County Historical Society and benefits both the society and Woodlawn Cemetery. Actors portray influential people in Winona’s past, many of whom are buried in the cemetery. 

This year’s theme is parks. Students heard stories about the people who were instrumental in establishing them and others who the parks are now named after. 

In the photo above, sixth-graders hear from “Daniel Sinclair” (played by Lee Gundersheimer), for whom the park on the 300 block of East Broadway — also known as the Purple Dinosaur Park — is named. Sinclair, a staunch Republican, was a former newspaper editor and postmaster. He received one of 306 medals commissioned by former President Ulysses S. Grant to be given to friends and supporters who were loyal to him. 

The Cemetery Walk is open to the public from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 12 and Sunday, Oct. 13. The entire experience takes about two hours. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for students and $3 for youth 12 and under.