Clarion plans 175-year anniversary

CLARION – Clarion Borough turned 175 years old in April, and the town will celebrate its milestone with a multi-faceted event Oct. 2 at the end of the Autumn Leaf Festival.

“We want everybody to be a part of it,” said Clarion Chamber of Commerce executive director Tracy Becker.

Clarion Borough Council, the Clarion Area Chamber of Business and Industry, the Clarion County Historical Society, the Clarion Blueprint Community board and the Merchants of Clarion discussed several ideas at a July 22 meeting.

Plans are still in early form. But the organizations wanted to spread the word about the celebration now.

“We kind of want to build up to the event,” Becker said.

At the moment, the celebration is scheduled to be held between Wood Street and Main Street along Fifth Avenue – the area in front of the historical society’s office. The event will run from noon to 4 p.m.

Tentative plans for the celebration involve ice cream: A 175-pound sundae for visitors, with numerous toppings, that will be set up along the street.

Another event is a series of local speakers, who will offer historical proclamations in the Veterans’ Memorial Park gazebo.

Presenters from Clarion University (which celebrates its 150th anniversary next year) and the community will attend.

Speeches will begin at 1 p.m.

Of course, Clarion’s history will be emphasized in different ways throughout the day.

“Our hope is maybe a walking tour,” Becker explained.

The plan is for guides in period garb to conduct these walks, which visit points of interest marked on maps supplied by the historical society.

The society office and Sutton-Ditz House will be open during the time to display artifacts from Clarion’s history.

One such item is the original deed for the Clarion Borough land.

The celebration’s involved parties hope to offer musical entertainment by the Clarion University Chamber Choir, as well.

Autumn Leaf vendors, such as the Knights of Columbus, should also be available for visitors.

Several local clubs will also be invited to share in the anniversary by displaying their history.

Local business owners are asked to join by decorating their stores with photographs of Clarion through the years. Community members who own old photographs also are encouraged to incorporate their images in displays.

More information regarding the event is to follow. People are encouraged to watch for flyers and advertisements around town.

Questions regarding the event can be directed to the chamber at (814) 226-9161.