The rainy weather did not cooperate for the first two days of West Liberty’s Bicentennial Celebration, July 6-9, but the sun came out for perfect weather on Saturday and Sunday. Thursday was the kickoff downtown with many shops open late and eateries providing specials. West Liberty story time was on Friday and Sunday with many enjoying sharing and hearing the history of West Liberty.
Folks attended the Bicentennial History Parade and a hog roast on Saturday. Sunday a community photo and picnic were enjoyed and the event ended with an old fashioned tent meeting with Rev. Ron Irick.
Musical entertainment was enjoyed every day with several groups and bands joining in like God’s Children’s Choir and the Wild Mustaings.
The Oldest Pioneer Man and Woman were 95-year-old Tracy Humble and 101-year-old Cristine Hanenkrat. They as well as other pioneer nominees participated in the Bicentennial History parade. There were sixty-four entries into the Parade which included cars and motorcycles entered into the show and floats representing four 50 year times a period in West Liberty’s 200 years.
Marie’s Candies was the Favorite West Liberty Business, and Matt Yoder the Favorite West Liberty Farmer.
There were 79 entries in the Children’s Essay Contest. They were judged in five groups with three winners in each. Group one: Eli Bell- 1st, Cara Deam -2nd and Jacob Griffith was 3rd place. Group two: Olivia Wilcox- 1st, Ava Puckett – 2nd and Parker Hagar was 3rd place. Third Group: Emma Bails -1st, Joey LaRoche- 2nd, and Zander Fahnestock was 3rd place. Fourth group: Carter Titus – 1st, Sophia Hardwick – 2nd and Cale Hall was 3rd place. Fifth group: Elias Kirker-Napoirkowski – 1st, Rachel Davis – 2nd and Jillian Henry was 3rd place. All of the essay entries were included in the Bicentennial Booklet.
The Art Contest 1st place winner was Sharon Schlabach. The Beard Contest winners were Adam Crawford- 1st, Tanner Young – 2nd and George Wackerman was 3rd place. The Mustache Contest winners were Kirk Larson for 1st and Adam Crawford was 2nd place.
The Bicentennial Car and Motorcycle Show winners were: Car show- Tom Smith – 1st, Aaron Wren – 2nd and Ed Cox was 3rd place. For motorcycles they were: Jim Shively – 1st, Ron Anthony- 2nd and Eric Johnson was 3rd place. The Bicentennial 5K Run/Walk had thirty participant and winners will soon be listed on www.tigersrun.com website.
The opening of the time capsule was a surprise because it was the wrong one. Not many knew there were two but the one opened was actually from July 4, 1976, America’s 200th Birthday. The location of the one from 1967 is still a mystery. Several spots have been checked but this buried treasure remains hidden. A time capsule of 2016 goodies was buried, not to be opened until July 10, 2057.
Tami Wenger is a regular contributor to this newspaper.