Reunion Troy sets sights on people and places

Published 3:00 am Saturday, October 28, 2017

The Reunion Troy committee has its sights set on 2018, the second year of the three-year Alabama Bicentennial celebration.

The first year of the celebration 2017, focused on places and the committee supported the efforts of the Troy Downtown Committee, which sponsored an Alabama 200 kickoff concert with Troy University, a painted rock hide, and plaques designating downtown historic sites.

Stephanie Baker, committee chair, said the year 2018 will focus on people and 2019, Alabama’s 200th, will focus on stories.

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Although nothing is set in stone for 2018, plans are underway for a huge celebration in February with Georgia Congressman John Lewis among the celebrated people.

Lewis will be honored during the annual Leadership Conference hosted by the City of Troy and Troy University the first weekend in February and also as a Pike County person of prominence by Reunion Troy.

“We would like to find ways to involve students in honoring U.S. Congressman John Lewis,” Baker said. “We will possibly contact the schools as to ways that might be done.”

Shelia Jackson said there is growing interest in the arts and an art contest might be a way to involved students. Other suggestions included an essay contest and a wax museum. Dianna Lee said wax museums are ways for students to present information about a person of historical history.

“The students dress as historical figures and stand perfectly still until a button is pushed,” Lee said. “Then, they tell interesting facts about that person. They often will have a display board with additional information.”

The idea of a cemetery tour of historic Beulah Cemetery was suggested, perhaps around Halloween.

Tim Hussey said there are many interesting stories about people of influence that are buried at Beulah and other cemeteries in town and their stories are worth telling.

It was suggested that a daytime cemetery tour would attract those who might shy away from a haunted cemetery tour.

Baker said the Reunion Troy committee will continue with the plans in place and to explore ideas that have been presented. However, she said a main purpose of the committee is to encourage families, businesses, schools, churches, clubs and organizations to have Alabama 200 celebrations of their own.

“The committee will assist those who would like to have reunions, homecomings and other similar events,” she said. “We have packets available at the Tourism Office with information about hotels, restaurants, local attractions and events that are free and open to the public.”

The Reunion Troy Committee welcomes suggestions from the public. Shelia Jackson, Troy Tourism director, is the contact person at the Troy Tourism Department.