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Kansas Tornado Wedding & Other Notes

Trainer Jerry Livingston has been known to stir things up on occasion, but he was a mere witness to this dust-up. Livingston watched the Preakness Stakes at his home in Anthony, Kan., jumped in the shower and then headed down the road to his sister Carla Pence’s place in Harper, a few miles away.

His nephew was getting married at 6 p.m. so Livingston gauged his time accordingly. He knew he could watch the race at Pimlico, clean up and be on time, and that’s exactly what happened. He took a look at the weather channel before he left and spotted some wild weather nearby, but that’s not enough to stop a wedding in Kansas. Those folks aren’t bothered by much of anything.

Livingston arrived on time and the wedding was about to get under way when he looked up at the sky. He’s seen bad weather before but this particular picture he isn’t apt to forget. If he does, all he has to do is call up the video on the internet.

“The wedding is about to take place and you couldn’t believe the backdrop,” Livingston said Friday night.

“In the background was this golden wheat field with a tornado hanging right over the top of it. It kept getting bigger and bigger, wider and wider. It hit a farm a few miles away and took out about 15 turbines on a wind farm.”

Against this majestic backdrop, a golden wheat farm on the plains of Kansas, beneath the awesome picture of a growing, dark tornado, Caleb Pence, 22, married Candra, 21,the woman he met at a rodeo.

One of the relatives took a video of the proceedings and it can be found below. The bride and groom are featured prominently, of course, and right near the end of the tape, in a western hat and pink shirt, is Canterbury’s champion quarter horse trainer from 1995-97.


The national weather service measured the tornado as an F3. Livingston, meanwhile, arrived back at Canterbury Park late Monday, and was still shaking his head in wonder Friday night.

“It was really something. I’ve seen tornadoes before, but this one was something else,” he said.


The Canterbury Racing Club added another runner to its stable for the 2012 race meet on Friday’s card, claiming Downerbythemeadow, a 5-year-old mare by Rock Climb from Joyous Wind.

Downer’s career stats heading into Friday’s race were 6-1-3 from 29 career starts for earnings of $38,897. He was bred by SEJ Stables Inc of Minnesota, also the owner until Friday’s claim.

Downer finished third in the six-furlong event under Denny Velazquez. She will be trained for the 146-member club by Clay Brinson.

That investment, a $3,500 claim, came to a shade under $24 a head.


A chance contest entry on the KFAN webpage turned into a free evening of entertainment for Travis Totino, who celebrated his 26th birthday on Sunday.

He, Jessica Franson, Jake Skovbroten, Troy Totino, Kirsten Totino and Lisa Alexander won packages that included free admission, programs, $5 food coupons and 10 percent savings on purchases. Travis, Jessica and Skovbroten also watched the third race in the announcer’s booth with Paul Allen.

This blog was written by Canterbury Staff Writer Jim Wells. Wells was a longtime sportswriter at the Pioneer Press and is a member of the Canterbury Park Hall of Fame.

Photo Credit: Associated Press