Craig Tebon, right, is greeted as he enters Knuth’s by former Ripon Main Street President Steve Sorenson, left, and current President Tom Moniz.
Craig Tebon, right, is greeted as he enters Knuth’s by former Ripon Main Street President Steve Sorenson, left, and current President Tom Moniz.

   When Craig Tebon entered Knuth’s Brewing Co. on a recent Thursday evening, his eyes spotted Diane Nowinski.

   Because the manager of Ripon’s Main Street organization knew that his group’s secretary also worked at St. Catherine of Siena church, “I just assumed she was there for a church meeting.”

   “But then I saw Laura [Kegler, executive assistant at the Ripon Area Chamber of Commerce] and [downtown developer] Scott [Kearney] and [developer and board member] Mary [Flanagan]” and then he realized he’d been lured to Knuth’s under false pretenses.

   Ripon Main Street President Tom Moniz had suggested the two meet to discuss issues coming up at a future board meeting.

   But Moniz had instead organized a surprise party for Tebon, who is completing his 25th year as Ripon’s Main Street manager and is the longest-tenured downtown manager in the state.

   Tebon was served a beer as Moniz told the approximately 30 people gathered that the main street manager had long been among downtown Ripon’s most energetic champions.

   Tebon opened a card and a gift and then circulated among friends and family for handshakes, hugs and shared amazement at how quickly 25 years can pass.