Tater Tot Snodgrass

Matthew Daniel Snodgrass Jr. was the inspiration behind the Rainbow River Pageants’ Tater Tot Award, which is now accepting nominations.

Nominations for the Tater Tot Award, which recognizes individuals who are inspiring to the Dunnellon community, are being accepted by the Rainbow River Pageant Committee. The award was inspired by the original “Tater Tot,” Matthew Snodgrass Jr., whose beautiful spirit inspired countless people in the community and beyond.

The award is given out at the Rainbow River Pageant during the annual Dunnellon Boomtown Days event.

Matthew Daniel Snodgrass Jr. was born in Ocala on May 10, 2018. Although he spent much of his life in the hospital and doctors offices, his home was in Dunnellon. And Dunnellon loved him.

During his treatments, Tater kept his smile and joyful personality, even on his darkest days. His smile would light up a room.

Tater Tot enjoyed fishing, racing, riding horses, riding ATVs, playing with toy trucks, playing in the dirt and just being a boy.

He wanted to be a contestant in the Tiny Division of the Rainbow River Pageants but sadly was too ill to make it on stage the day of the event.

Instead, that day, his father went on stage and shared Tater Tot’s story with the audience, once again inspiring our community. On May 7 of that year, Tater Tot lost his courageous battle to leukemia.

In honor of Snodgrass Jr., the Rainbow River Pageants will annually give away the Tater Tot Award to an individual who has inspired our community. The award was created to honor the memory and the impact that Matthew had on the Dunnellon Community.

Each year, nominations are accepted just prior to the Rainbow River Pageant for individuals within the Greater Dunnellon area to nominate someone who they believe has been an inspiration to the community.

There’s no age limit for nominees. Young or old, tell us why you feel your nominee should be considered. Perhaps you know someone like Matthew who fought a courageous battle while still inspiring others, or perhaps you know someone that dedicates countless volunteer hours in the community. Rainbow River Pageants wants to hear about your local hero.

All nominations will be reviewed by members of Pageant Committee, and one individual will be selected to receive the 2023 Tater Tot Award.

Nominations are easy. Visit the Rainbow River Pageant website: www. rainbowriverpageants.com.

All applications must be received by April 6.

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