(Art by Catherine Jones and available for sale at art.com)
According to this site, the value of a dollar in 1918 was equivalent to $15.08 in today's money. Keep this in mind as you read this story of Mormor's from 1918 (if I did my math correctly).
When the race for twelve year olds and younger was called I eagerly ran to the starting point where quite a group was gathered. I was lucky enough to win, was given $2.50 as prize money, and promptly shared ice cream cones with my brother, Art. Another race was for twelve year olds and older. Art urged me to enter because I was exactly twelve and he saw prospects of more ice cream. This race attracted some young women so I had to really ramble, but I won and got another $2.50, so Art got his ice cream cone again.
The last race was an obstacle race and open to anyone, girls or women. We were shown the course which involved running around things, running backward, hopping on one leg, and going up over stumps. Once more Art kept urging me to enter, even though there were quite a few grown-up entrants, so away I went.
I was in the lead and just climbing up on a stump when my mother spotted me and yelled, "ESTHER PATRINA HOLMGREN, HAVE YOU GONE CRAZY?! COME HERE!"
Well, I couldn't obey and still win, so I kept on, just calling I'd be there in a minute.
Well, I won, Art got another cone, and I hurried to explain things to my mother. You see she'd been putting away the leftover food from our picnic table and didn't know what I'd been doing. She was glad for me that I'd won $7.50, but I must admit I felt quite humiliated when she yelled at me in front of all those people.
By my calculations (questionable, certainly) her total prize money would equal $113.10 in today's money. Well, last year's money, anyway -- this year's money is too volatile to tell.