formed to oversee
Madisons 200th celebration
(February 2007) Madison, Ind., will celebrate its
200th birthday in 2009. To get ready for the momentous occasion, a bicentennial
steering committee has been formed to look at ways in which the city
can commemorate the big anniversary with special community events.
Betsey Vonderheide and Jan Vetrhus have been selected to co-chair the
committee. Other members include Curt Jacobs for promotion and publicity;
Julia Barber for finance and budget; Matt Forrester and Mary Davee for
fundraising; Jim Grant for programs and special events; Susan Ohlendorf
for schools; and Marci Jones for volunteer coordination. Amy Browning
of Mayor Al Huntingtons office will manage the calendar and scheduling
Vonderheide said the first order of business will be to have a website
and logo for the celebration in place within the next six months. She
said a community-wide logo contest will soon be held with the winner
possibly receiving a $200 prize. The logo will be incorporated into
all the written material, the website and the products of the celebration.
The committee hopes that all groups, organizations and festivals in
Madison will incorporate the birthday celebration into their regular
events for 2009. Vonderheide said a letter of request is being sent
to those groups that the committee knows how to contact.
She also said the city is planning several special events throughout
the year and will need community groups to assume the responsibility
for the management of them.
She said an example of such events could include a photography contest,
a parade, a bicentennial cookbook contest or even performing arts events.
One event many have suggested would be to do some type of period dress
with period activities along a section of Main Street, including food
vendors and entertainment. She has even suggested that local restaurants
name a dish for a person or event in Madison history as a way to support
the citys bicentennial.
Vonderheide has applied for a $150,000 grant, which the city would have
to match, from the Preserve America Foundation for community plays specific
to Madison history. Those plays would be performed throughout the bicentennial
and continue afterwards as well.
Our city is rich in unique history, with the Underground Railroad,
Jenny Lind, the Civil War, and so many other events and people, we really
need to celebrate this, Vonderheide said.
Grant said they are in the earliest planning stages and have received
many requests and ideas. All ideas for events are welcome and encouraged,
Anyone who wants to participate in the planning
of the event should contact the appropriate chairperson or Marci Jones
at the Madison Area Convention and Visitors Center at (812) 265-2956.
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