What’s been billed as a Highland bicentennial celebration kick off will take place on Saturday, Aug. 6 with a rededication of the Highland United Methodist Church.
The celebration at the church built in 1900 will run from noon to 6 p.m. and will include displays and programs on church families and church life in the village for 200 years. A “Wall of Fame” program will have readings from past members’ poems and books, according to Barbara Hodge, the bicentennial chairman. She said there will also be displays of past members’ creations like quilts, paintings, other hand-crafted items, photos, writings, maps and more.
Anyone that has items they would like to display can bring them to the church from 2-8 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 4 or from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 5. All the exhibits will be available for pick-up at 6 p.m. following the rededication, which is open to the public.
The next event leading up to the bicentennial will be at “ghost walk” at the Highland Cemetery at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 27. In addition, a driving tour of homes and businesses will be held the same day from noon to 8 p.m.
“We are trying to identify as many homes and businesses as possible with photos at the sites,” Hodge said. “Homes around the outskirts of the village will be identified also, such as the Underground Railroad home on Underground Road.
The two months of activities will culminate with the Highland Bicentennial Program and Parade on Saturday, Sept. 17 and Sunday, Sept. 18 at the village park off Church Street.
Parking will be free.
Saturday’s program starts at 9 a.m. when biscuits and gravy will be available. There will be a parade at noon; a “museum” of old artifacts; a chili cook-off; and Charlotte Pack, the author of “Time Travels” that features some of Highland’s history, will be on hand.
There will be a fish fry, other food vendors, music, old-time games, a Civil War encampment and demonstrations, other types of vendors, and inflatable games both days.
Sunday’s program starts at 11 a.m. with a service at the Methodist church.
Highland was established in 1816 and was originally called New Lexington. But there was another town near Canton called New Lexington, so the local name was changed to Highland sometime after 1900.
Anyone wanting more information on how to be involved can contact Hodge at 937-780-7931.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.