Family Fun Day planned in Morenci 07.21.10

Written by David Green.

A car show, a corn hole tournament, kids games and a bicycle show, live music—they’re all part of a family fun day planned downtown by the Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce Aug. 21.

After a Chamber member complained about a lack of weekend entertainment in the community, a committee was formed to consider possible activities. The August car show is the first in what could become a series of monthly events.

Gaylord Hill of the Adrian Street Cruisers was invited to the Chamber’s July 9 meeting to discuss his group’s presence at the Morenci event. The Cruisers charge $300 to set up the show. The profits from their shows help pay fuel bills for elderly people in need of financial assistance.

The Cruisers provide a DJ and sponsor a 50/50 drawing and a hula hoop contest. The Chamber can organize other activities, such as a corn hole tournament, motorcycle show and pedal tractor contest.

In other Chamber business, vice president Jennifer Blaker noted that a wireless microphone was donated by Nicole DiCenso and a tripod was created and donated by Roth Fabricating to support the Chamber’s sound system.

The group discussed discount shopping cards that would be sold as a fund raiser. Chamber members would be able to buy space on the card.

DOWNTOWN—Five Chamber representatives attended the July 12 city council meeting to seek permission to schedule the car show event downtown from noon to 8 p.m.

Jennifer Blaker said that Mill Street could be used for the event, but the Chamber’s first choice was Main Street by blocking traffic from the stoplight to west Mill Street.

City supervisor Barney Vanderpool expressed concern about redirecting truck traffic through side streets. Police chief Larry Weeks shared that concern, not only for semis but also for large agricultural equipment.

It could be particularly challenging if the tomato harvest has begun north of town, he said.

The streets are in better shape now than when Parker Chemical was open, Chamber member Kent Deatrick said, and “hundreds of trucks a day” drove down the side streets.

“If we block Main, we’ll need to get proper signage,” Vanderpool said. “It’s not a simple matter of putting up barricades.”

“I don’t have the staff, unless somebody wants to pay for it, to put someone down there to manage that traffic,” Chief Weeks said.

Somebody would have to come in to erect and remove barricades, he said, noting that it would probably be the responsibility of the city workers.

“It’s only a few hours on a Saturday once in the month of August,” said Chamber member Trulla McClain.

“I’m supportive of what you’re doing,” Chief Weeks said, “but like in a parade, I call all my staff in and it costs a lot of money to do that. I’m sure no one wants to do that here so it’s a little different scenario.”

“Because we all have volunteered our time to put something into this community, what if we ask for some volunteers from the city workers and the police department. We’re volunteering; we’re not getting paid,” McClain said. “Is that a possibility?”

“You can always ask them,” Chief Weeks said.

Council members voted unanimously to approve the request to close a block of Main Street.

If a stage were to be erected just west of the stoplight, two entrances to Morenci Deli would be blocked, Chief Weeks said.

“Has anyone contacted the Deli?” he asked.

A member of the Chamber’s entertainment committee said that contact was not yet made. An audience member suggested blocking the street west of their drive.

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016