Planning begins for city's bicentennial bash
Pickerington officials are in the process of soliciting ideas and assistance from the community about how to celebrate the city's 200 years of existence.
Founded in 1815 by Abraham Pickering, the village went by the name Jacksonville until citizens petitioned the state legislature to rename it Pickerington in honor of its founder in 1827.
The year 2015 marks Pickerington's bicentennial, and with that comes a celebration of the city's history, culture and success.
"It's our birthday and we're having a party!" is the straightforward theme behind the festivities, said Tammy Sawyer, entertainment chairwoman of Pickerington's Bicentennial Committee.
"We want it to feel like a giant birthday party," she said.
The executive committee comprised of various city officials was assembled to formulate a planning stratagem for the celebration.
"Mayor (Lee Gray) appointed this committee last July," Sawyer said.
"We have a lot of ideas already," she said, adding City Council has approved an initial $30,000 budget for the celebration.
"It's a once in a lifetime celebration," Gray said.
"We want to bring the community together to celebrate Pickerington's rich history and also look ahead to our future," he said.
Sawyer said initial plans call for the event to begin with an opening of the city's time capsule April 18, 2015.
That will be followed by a larger, family-friendly celebration that will last three days, Sept. 5-7, 2015, which will also coincide with the annual Lions Club Fish Fry and Homecoming.
She said the celebration will include "rides, games, food, live music, bingo, historic presentations, fireworks and more."
It will be held on Lockville Road, Columbus Street and in Victory Park.
An official bicentennial logo is currently being designed by the event's marketing and promotions chairman Chris Schweitzer, Sawyer said.
Pickerington City Manager Bill Vance termed the bicentennial an "historic Pickerington community celebration" and said he will be involved in planning the event's "location logistics."
Pickerington Lions Club president Brian Fox has been tabbed to coordinate the event's parade.
Other members of the Pick 2015 Bicentennial Celebration Executive Committee are: Cristie Hammond, Lynda Yartin, Rebecca Medinger and Gary Taylor.
The Bicentennial Committee, which meets monthly, welcomes participation from the community, Sawyer said.
"All meetings are open to the public," she said.
"They typically last one hour in length. Any interested individuals can contact the Mayor's office for meeting times and locations.
"We have recently established subcommittees and delegated tasks to those committee (chairmen)," Sawyer said.
"We are looking for volunteers from the community to fill those committees," she said.
"Things will really start to ramp up as we move forward to 2015," Sawyer said.
Those interested in participating can contact Lynda Yartin, volunteer coordinator, at 614-837-3974 or by e-mail at email@example.com
The next meeting for Pick 2015 is 10 a.m. Oct. 7 in Pickerington City Hall, 100 Lockville Road.