Addison has a full slate of activities planned for its 250th birthday
ADDISON — Come rain or shine, Addison on Oct. 15 and 16 will celebrate the 250th anniversary of the town’s founding, joining many other county communities who this year have thrown a party — or plan to do so — to honor the occasion.
“(We want) to try to build a greater sense of community, and pride in small-town America,” said Addison selectboard chairman Jeff Kauffman, who is helping coordinate the weekend activities. “It’s kind of nice to look back at our history, too. Sometimes we forget where we’ve come from.”
Most of the weekend’s activities will focus on Addison Central School, the town clerk’s office and Addison’s former town hall, which a committee has been studying how and whether to renovate.
Events will range from the silly — Cow Plop Bingo, actually a fund-raiser to support the celebration — to the more serious — town hall committee head John Spencer will make a presentation in the former town hall of a proposal to restore the building and use it once again.
Kauffman emphasized there is no rain date. Officials have their fingers crossed that Mother Nature will cooperate.
“Everything will happen no matter what, but we’re hoping for good weather,” he said.
The aforementioned Cow Plop Bingo will be one of the first events to get under way on that Saturday, at 9 a.m. to be exact, although its exact ending time is as uncertain as its result.
Kauffman acknowledged the game is more like roulette: A cow is tethered on a plot of land with painted squares. The rights to each square are sold, and the winner is the owner of the square that the cow ultimately decides to grace with manure.
Also at 9 a.m., a craft sale will start in the central school gym. According to the official press release for the event, as of earlier this week tables for crafters were still available at $20 per.
Also from 9 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, bakers may drop off their homemade pies at the ACS art room for a contest. Pie judging will be held at 2 p.m.
Two tournaments are set for outside at the main celebration site. At 10 a.m., a horseshoe tournament will begin, and at 11 a.m. a Frisbee golf competition starts. Participants in the latter are asked to bring their own disks.
At 10:30 p.m., Spencer will begin a dual presentation at the former town hall. One will be of the plans for the future of the structure, and the other will be excerpts from family journals of former Addison residents throughout history.
“We’re hoping to get some exposure for that building,” Kauffman said.
Throughout the day at the site, exhibitors will include antique cars and tractors, miniature donkeys from Ass-pirin Acres, local Boy Scouts, and more.
Elsewhere in Addison on Saturday, history will be the theme: The D.A.R. Mansion on Route 17 will be open to the public from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. (this offering assumes ongoing renovations are complete by then), and at 1 p.m. at the nearby John Strong Mansion, Maureen Labenski will make a free presentation from Corabelle Strong’s journals.
Then things will pick up again at the end of the afternoon back at Addison Four Corners. At 5 p.m. in the ACS gym Erwin “Red” Clark — described by Kauffman as “the unofficial historian of Addison” — will take a look back at the town’s past. Kauffman said Clark’s father wrote a definitive history of the town, and that Clark picked up where he left off.
At 6 p.m. in the gym, a community potluck dinner is planned. Those with surnames beginning with the letters A through C are asked to bring beverages; from D to L, main dishes; from M to T, side dishes or salads; and from S to Z, desserts.
To cap Saturday’s festivities, the town clerk’s office parking lot will host a street dance with music from DJ Amanda Rock. Those brave enough can take advantage of the karaoke that will be offered, Kauffman said.
Finally, two meals for which there will be a charge will be offered on Sunday. The fire department will serve breakfast from 7 to 11 a.m., and from 12:30 to 3 p.m. the Crown Point Historic Site will host a barbecue.
The cost for that latter meal will be $15, with the proceeds benefiting the bridge-opening celebration now planned for next spring. Tickets must be purchased in advance and are available at the West Addison General Store or Champ’s Trading Post.
As of earlier this week, Kauffman said some volunteers are still needed for staffing some weekend events. Those interested may reach Kauffman at [email protected] or 349-9380.
More information on the celebration is available at www.addisonvt.com, and “250” hats, t-shirts and mugs are for sale at the Addison town clerk’s office for $7 each.
Some changes and additions are still possible, Kauffman said, but the dates are set.
“It doesn’t matter what the weather is,” he said. “We’ll have a nice time.”
Andy Kirkaldy may be reached at [email protected].
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