The 300th Anniversary Committee and the 300th Events Team have officially begun the countdown to the September 22, 2012 Opening Events. Make sure this date is on your calendar because you will not want to miss these unique community events. Organizers are hard at work throughout the summer, making sure the nine-month celebration will have a smooth start in the fall. A Community Scavenger Hunt began in July and people are welcome to join in at any time. Lauren Kennedy, the Scavenger Hunt’s designer, notes that two new clues are posted each week at www.lexington300.org. If you have been traveling, don’t worry! The clues remain on the website and you can join in the fun at any time. Margaret Counts-Klebe, 300th Publicity Chair told us, “The Scavenger Hunt is a fun way for residents to learn about the Town and its history this summer. You can really feel the excitement building as we head towards September.”
Events Co-Chairs Tanya Morrisett and Jessie Steigerwald explain that the Events Team suggested a full day of offerings for September 22’s Opening Day to enable as many people as possible to connect to the 300th Anniversary on the first official day of the celebration. “We anticipated a huge turnout and we wanted to have events running from morning until night,” says Morrisett, “our community is so vibrant, we know that even busy people will want to take some time on Opening Day to attend one of the events.” Steigerwald adds, “Scheduling different events throughout the day will make it easier for people to select the event that works best for them. We think the Country Fair, which runs from 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., will be a great opportunity for the town to gather and celebrate.”
The Country Fair will open to fairgoers at 11:00 a.m. Fay Backert, Country Fair Chair, notes that the Tercentennial tent will include a performance space and bandstand. Fairgoers may compete in special Blue Ribbon contests; categories include food and gardening challenges. Check the 300th website for more details about the contests. Residents will have the opportunity to share their favorite Lexington memories at a special place in the main tent, and other parts of the tent will have demonstrations, including traditional fiber arts and textile try-it stations. Teams will be able to sign up for the Race Through Time, an exciting adventure through town with fun prizes! The 300th Fiber Arts Committee is organizing volunteers who will demonstrate a host of traditional and contemporary artisan skills, from embroidery to stitching, quilting to rug braiding. In addition, individuals have created beautiful accessories and elegant pillows. These will all be available for sale, with all proceeds to help pay for the 300th Anniversary community events. Beautiful quilts will also be raffled at this event!
Earlier in the morning, the formal Opening Ceremony begins at Lexington High School and Cary Hall. The program begins at 9:30 a.m. at both locations, with a pre-show at 9:00 a.m. Tickets were snapped up very quickly, and Town Hall has a wait list in case anyone decides they are not able to attend. Lexmedia will tape and broadcast the Opening Ceremony which will include performances by the LHS Wind Ensemble, special readings, and a surprise song from the LexFun Preschool Chorus. For more information, visit the website. The Opening Ceremony team was delighted that tickets were in such high demand, but they wished more people could be accommodated. “We planned the dual locations from the start, as we did anticipate strong interest. We wish more could attend, but we are glad we can provide more seats than if we had held the ceremony in only one location.”
As a special transition, the 300th Anniversary Committee is coordinating an outdoor ceremony to coincide with the All Town Photograph. Details will be on the website, but the ceremony is likely to begin just before noon. Planners hope that people will visit the Country Fair to find delicious picnic lunch foods and then join neighbors and friends at the track area for live music and some community surprises. Participants from the morning program will parade over to join in the fun. Several special Country Fair contests are scheduled to begin just after the All Town Picnic Lunch.
Later in the evening, Kamala Soparkar and Kathleen Lenihan are Co-Chairing “Dance Revolution 300”, the culmination of the Opening Day Events, at Lexington High School. Lenihan says, “This intergenerational event that celebrates 300 years of dance and will be a great way to close out the day.” The evening begins at 6:30 p.m. at the High School with dance instructors who will teach New England-style, Colonial-era folk dances as well as waltz and swing dancing. At 8:00 p.m., the DJ takes over, playing everything from Elvis and the Beatles to Maroon 5 and Katy Perry. LexFun will have a craft table for preschoolers and both the school PTAs and LexFun volunteers will staff a refreshment table. Wear comfy shoes because you’ll be dancing the night away!
For those interested in volunteering for any Opening Day Event, for the October 27th Fashion Revue or any future 300th Event, please visit the website.