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Unveiling historic marker highlights TroyFest

The unveiling of a locally written historic marker will be a highlight of TroyFest in downtown Troy this weekend. The unveiling ceremony will be at will be 10 a.m. on Saturday at the Johnson Center for the Arts at 300 East Walnut Street.

State and local officials, residents and visitors are invited to witness the maker unveiling and participate in all the weekend activities.

Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford said he joins all of Troy in the growing excitement about celebrating the history and heritage of Troy through TroyFest and the promotion of historic places such as the Johnson Center.

“The Holman and Ethel Johnson Center for the Arts adds a new dimension to the historic downtown area,” Lunsford said. “Its world-class exhibits give people even more reasons to want to come home or to visit Troy.”

The focal point of the Troy-Pike Cultural Arts Complex is the Johnson Center for the Arts. The arts center is located in the restored 1910 classical-revival style post office, which was given new life as a center for the arts.

“The Johnson Center for the Arts opened to the public as a unique cultural arts venue in 2008,” said Shelia Jackson, Troy director of tourism. “The Center accommodates an audience of more than 400 and is home to seven galleries, including the 1,400-square foot, two-story main gallery. The Johnson Center is the site of world-class art exhibitions and has received acclaim from its visitors. We are proud that the unveiling of the historic marker at the Johnson Center will be a part of the 2010 TroyFest on April 24 and 25.”

TroyFest will get underway Saturday morning with one of the area’s top arts and crafts shows. The festival also features non-stop entertainment, a juried art show, antiques, kids activities and a food court.

Former residents, friends and visitors are invited to come home to Troy and celebrate the Great Troy Alabama Homecoming with local folks during TroyFest.

Jackson said the annual spring fest is the officially designated event for the celebration of the “Year of Alabama Small Towns and Downtowns” as proclaimed by Gov. Bob Riley and the Alabama Tourism Department.

“TroyFest is a time when many people make their plans to be home or to come back home because the festival is a major family attraction in Troy,” Jackson said. “So, we thought it would be a good time to invite people to come back home and celebrate the hometown atmosphere of our downtown and to visit with friends and neighbors. TroyFest is also a great time for visitors to come and discover Troy.”

In addition to the Johnson Center, Troy is home to internationally acclaimed Troy University, the Pioneer Museum of Alabama and Pike County Lake.

“Troy has architecturally-significant places of worship, affordable lodging and great restaurants, including, Sisters, Mossy Grove and Crowe’s Chicken, which were all featured in the state tourism department’s “100 dishes to eat in Alabama before you die” brochure,” Jackson said. “During our homecoming weekend, we want people to experience the best of our hometown. Whether it is strolling through exhibits for art during TroyFest or enjoying the fellowship of friends and neighbors, we want residents and visitors to celebrate all that Troy has to offer.”