The smiling face of Marvin Franzen is well-known to patrons of Codfish Hollow Barnstormers.
For years, “Marv” has driven the tractor that tows a modified hay wagon to carry concertgoers on a public road about a quarter mile between the venue and the parking lot.
A beloved fixture at Codfish Hollow, Franzen was injured late Saturday in an accident that occurred just before the concert by the evening’s headliner, The Artisanals, ended. Three people were involved. Two of them were treated and released, but Franzen is hospitalized in Iowa City with several broken bones.
The injuries are serious but not life-threatening, said Angie Petit Lichter, public relations manager at Codfish Hollow. While Franzen faces several surgeries, he is expected to recover.
To help defray the costs of his medical and tractor expenses, a GoFundMe account has been established. Visit GoFundMe.com and search for Marvin Franzen to donate. Watch for updates at Codfish Hollow Barnstormer’s Facebook page.
“As anyone who has visited us knows, Marvin is one of the best parts of the Hollow,” said Tiffany Biehl, who owns the venue with her husband, Shawn. “To us, he is much more than that, Marvin is our family. We will do everything we can to help Marvin and his family during his recovery.”
People who would like to send cards and well-wishes to Franzen can mail them to Tiffany Biehl, 3437 288th Ave., Maquoketa. She will deliver them to the Franzen family.
An emergency management drill at Codfish Hollow two weeks ago helped to prepare the volunteers to respond when the tractor driven by Franzen left the road and came to rest in the ditch.
“While this accident was something we never envisioned, the drill held Aug. 1 provided us with a plan, allowed everyone to respond calmly, and ensured emergency personnel were able to reach the overturned tractor and wagon quickly,” Petit Lichter said. “Our security staff were prepared to manage the crowd with everyone’s safety a top priority.”
Petit Lichter thanked emergency personnel who responded.
Codfish Hollow Barnstormers is a volunteer-driven music venue that opened 10 years ago in rural Jackson County, music concerts are held in the round barn on the Costello/Biehl property. Events occur between April and October.