It’s odd to write about an event or committee when you’re a member. Some would say an objective viewpoint goes right out the window.
Well, that's true. It does.
I belong to an impressive group who is bent on creating the most memorable 300th birthday party ever – or at least something to tide us over until the 400th.
We belong to the Lexington’s 300th Anniversary Celebration Committee and two nights ago we went before the .
During the first ½ hour I jotted notes for and then it was the committee’s turn to make a presentation and tell the selectmen our plans for the nine-month celebration that starts in September 2012 and ends in May 2013. (Sort of.)
Really, there’s no sense in scheduling events only to learn whoops, “We can’t allow that” or “Nah, we’re not going to approve that.”
I’m mostly publicity, so I took notes and went for moral support. Town Clerk Donna Hooper sat in the back and did the same.
Our Chairwoman Susan Rockwell, Town Celebrations Chair Suzie Barry, Event Chair Jessie Steigerwald (yup, from the School Committee), and Memorial Chair Eric Carlson took turns presenting information to the Selectmen.
And they were receptive. We’re on the right track. I hope you’re receptive (and excited) too.
First, I’ll hit you with our two major ideas.
The 2013 Patriot’s Day Parade will be larger, bigger, brighter and better and will incorporate the 300th theme.
That’s why Suzie asked the selectmen – just this once – to hold it on Sunday afternoon. Maine and Massachusetts are the only two states that observe Patriots' Day. And we anticipate a lot of visitors, who probably won’t get Monday off.
So, our thought (actually Suzie is the brains behind this) is to hold the parade Sunday afternoon and let that preview Monday’s re-enactment.
The annual pancake breakfast won’t suffer, because the same people who go to the re-enactment will hit the churches for a carbohydrate boost.
We figure it’s a win-win for everyone.
Before you gasp, think about two days of celebration and a big big parade, with lots of dignitaries and out-of-state marching bands, who are asking for a part in our celebration.
The next one is a three-sided clock in Emery Park. Eric Carlson brought an enormous clock to the meeting and showed pictures of the clock at 10 feet, 12 feet high and in different positions in the park.
According to his plan, this triangle -- or tricorn clock -- would sit on a permanent memorial, one that would hold a titanium time capsule, donated by Stan and Lorraine Abramowitz. The clocks, perhaps, would have L-E-X-I-N-G-T-O-N and 3-0-0 in place of the numbers.
Selectman Peter Kelley asked why we didn’t consider a four-sided clock to represent the next 100 years.
It’s a thought. ...
There’s more though, so bear with me.
Jessie talked about our planning calendar and that, even though the 300th will be incorporated in almost everything that’s done, performed or played in town, we’ll have three major events and one early kick off program.
We’ll start in February 2012, with a three-century fashion show.
This, Jessie explained, will give people time to buy or make costumes for upcoming events. It’s also a great way to see how fashion evolved.
Opening ceremonies occur six months later in September at or the Donald Gillespie Auditorium at .
We’re thinking of all day activities for all ages. This would include historic games, farming demonstrations (remember we were Cambridge Farms), music and crafts. We’ll also hold an International Community Dance that night.
Incorporation weekend, which occured March 29-31, was a tough time to celebrate. It’s Easter Sunday, and too close to Patriots' Day. So, we opted to celebrate our incorportation from Cambridge Farms to Lexington on March 16 and 17 with multiple venues around town.
Workshops, lectures, demonstrations, open door tours and another evening dancer are planned.
You already know about Patriots' Day weekend.
We’ll end the celebrations with closing ceremonies, the monument unveiling and an old time baseball game. We’ll couple the game with an old-time community picnic.
Any thoughts or ideas to enhance our 300th celebrations?