The Montgomery Ruritan Club was Chartered in November 1960 with the purpose to promote community service not only in Montgomery but in all Daviess County. From conservative beginnings in fundraising projects with an ice cream social in Dages Grove (1961) to operation the Montgomery Recreational Park and Camp Grounds (1967), Building the Montgomery Community Building (1976) and sponsoring of the Turkey Trot Festival which is held the weekweekend after Labor Day in September of each year. The Turkey Trot held its first Festival in 1972 and has continued each year since that time. In addition to operating the Montgomery Ruritan Park and Camp Grounds, the biggest single event each year is the sponsoring of the Turkey Trot Festival. Originally a joint undertaking with the Daviess County Chamber of Commerce, the festival in recent years has become the undertaking of the Montgomery Ruritan Club as the main organizer and promoter. Some of the biggest names in country music and the entertainment field in general have performed at the Turkey Trot Festival. The four-day festival will again this year include the usual festival attractions.
Several major improvements and expansions have been made to the festival grounds and campground areas in recent years. Major additions and upgrading of campgrounds facilities including electric, water and sewage hookups were completed in the spring of 1999 and again in 2004. A new playground area was added in the spring of 2000, and a new grandstand was built on the south side of the track area in the late summer of 2000. Additional blacktop drive ways in the campgrounds were added in the fall of 2005. First opened in the Summer of 1967, Indian Rock Lake Beach was once a very popular summer swimming-beach area. However, the increasing cost of maintaining the beach plus the growing number of alternative public and private water recreational offerings made its continued use not feasible. The campgrounds with its modern facilities and many trees continues to attract hundreds of campers from Southwestern Indiana and from more distant places each year. With the recent completion of several shore line campsites, Montgomery Ruritan Park and Campgrounds has more than one hundred twenty campsites available during the camping season of mid-April through mid-October each year. Service to the community has been the major theme of the Montgomery Ruritan Club. That community service has taken many forms. Although no record exists, the Ruritans have donated thousands of dollars to further civic improvements, help charitable organizations, Barr-Reeve Scholarship Foundation, school projects and programs, and individuals with special hardships. For the past ten years, the Ruritan Club and Montgomery Park has hosted the Daviess County Cancer Society's Relay For Life.
In the many years of community service, the club has been at the same time a strong unifying force and a â€œgreat levelerâ€ as its membership and leadership has come from every social, economic, cultural and religious group in the community. To date there has never been a repeat Ruritan Club President as the Club has seen different presidents representing a wide range of professions and personal backgrounds. This divergence of leadership has still maintained continuity of club purpose.