A few Saturdays back I cruised around Sac County with Teresa harvesting their town signs. I knew Sac County was the home of the Largest Popcorn Ball in the World, but I did not know that popcorn was so huge to the development of the entire region. I found references to popcorn in three towns and one unincorporated town. The next time I fire up the Union Street Theater popcorn maker I will think of Sac County. (Unrelated, but the Union Street Theater has recently been upgraded substantially. If you haven’t stopped by for a show lately, you probably should get on that.)
Here are some facts about Sac County:
+ Population is 9,802 (2019) estimate. Making Sac County the 75th most populous county in Iowa. Behind Montgomery County and above Calhoun County.
+ The county seat and largest town is Sac City.
+ Was formed on January 13, 1846.
+ Named for the Sauk people.
+ Home of the World’s Largest Popcorn Ball.
+ Home of Blackhawk State Park.
+ Major highways are: US-20, US-71, IA-39, IA-110, and IA-175.
+ Adjacent counties are: Buena Vista, Calhoun, Carroll, Cherokee, Crawford, Ida, and Pocahontas.
+ Population peaked in 1930 at 17,641.
The Sac County Courthouse is fair looking, well it was, until they added that horrible addition to it:
The Sac County Courthouse in Sac City, Iowa.
The Sac County Freedom Rock is located in Sac City, Iowa:
With Sac County conquered, this is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:
29 counties completed. 29.3% of the Cyclone State conquered.
Here are the town signs of Sac County:
Sac City, Iowa
Lake View, Iowa
Black Hawk Lake
RICH HISTORY-PROUD COMMUNITY
Wall Lake, Iowa
WELCOME TO WALL LAKE
BIRTHPLACE OF ANDY WILLIAMS
Welcome to SCHALLER
Popcorn Capital of the World
City of EARLY
a taste of home.
A “MIGHTY” SMALL TOWN
Lytton, Iowa – Also Calhoun County
Ulmer, Iowa – Unincorporated
WELCOME TO ULMER
Sac County has a solid set of signs. I don’t strongly dislike any of them. Put in a position, of having to choose a worst sign, It would have to come down to Early, Lake View, Auburn, and Lytton. My feet to the fire, I give the worst town sign to Early. There is no pithy slogan, which is what saves Auburn. There is no boat, that is what saves Lake View. And Lytton gets points for just throwing their town sign on a big rock.
But who has the best town sign in Sac County. Who gets Best in Show. It really comes down to Wall Lake and Nemaha. The alternate town sign for Schaller would be an underdog for this award, but I only consider primary signs for this award, unless we get into a tie-breaker situation, like we did for Lucas County. With apologies to Andy Williams, my huckleberry friend, I’m going to paddle down this river that is wider than a mile, looking for rainbow’s end, to the town waitin’ around the bend, and give Best in Show to Nemaha.
Nemaha – Best in Show – Sac County
A few towns in Sac County have alternate signs:
Wall Lake – Alternate
Schaller – Alternate
Schaller – Alternate
Sac City – Alternate
Sac City – Alternate
Auburn – Alternate
You might be sitting there wondering, what makes Schaller the Popcorn Capital of the World? I mean, Sac City houses the World’s Biggest Popcorn Ball, just where does Schaller get off?
I pulled over and asked a guy name Derrick just where Schaller gets off making such a bold claim. Turns out that Derrick is the owner of Bango Haunted Crib. He told me that Schaller used to be the home of 3 popcorn companies. Jolly Time, Bango, and American. Now, the only company left in town is Jolly Time. Some of the people in town turned the old Bango building into a haunted house. I will get into the details of this in a future post of Sac County Auxiliary Images. But you combine that with the fact that Schaller has hosted Pop Corn Days for 70 years now. Now you know.
Here is the current list of Best in Shows:
Best in Show – Adair County
Best in Show – Audubon County
Best in Show – Benton County
Best in Show – Boone County
Best in Show – Calhoun County
Best in Show – Carroll County
Best in Show – Clarke County
Best in Show – Crawford County
Best in Show – Dallas County
Best in Show – Franklin County
Best in Show – Greene County
Best in Show – Grundy County
Best in Show – Guthrie County
Best in Show – Hamilton County
Best in Show – Hardin County
Best in Show – Humboldt County
Best in Show – Jasper County
Best in Show – Lucas County
Best in Show – Madison County
Best in Show – Marion County
Best in Show – Marshall County
Best in Show – Polk County
Best in Show – Poweshiek County
Best in Show – Sac County
Best in Show – Story County
Best in Show – Tama County
Best in Show – Union County
Best in Show – Webster County
Best in Show – Wright County
The Next time we check in on THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT we will visit Ida County.