City of Maumee to celebrate 175th anniversaryWritten by Evan Brune | | firstname.lastname@example.org
When the village of Maumee was incorporated in 1838, Martin Van Buren was U.S. president, the state of Michigan was just 1 year old and the coronation of Queen Victoria ushered in the Victorian Age in England.
Maumee is set to celebrate its 175th anniversary with a weeklong celebration starting Aug. 11. The celebration includes an ice cream social, a free movie day at the Maumee Indoor Theatre and a guided tour of the Fallen Timbers Battlefield.
“The official date of incorporation was back in March,” said John Jezak, Maumee city administrator. “In looking at previous years, they always celebrated in May. We’re doing it in August, and the reason we chose that week was because it ties in with our summer fair.”
Julie Rubini, a Maumee City Council representative and committee member, said the availability of Maumee families was also taken into consideration when the planning committee scheduled the anniversary celebration.
“It’s a time where families are taking vacations, so this way, they can take their vacation and spend some time at the celebration.”
Jezak said the weather was also a factor in choosing a date for the anniversary celebration.
“Previous events were marred with rain. We’re hoping for good weather,” he said.
The celebrations kick off on Aug. 11 with a tour of the Wolcott House, an old-fashioned baseball game and an ice cream social.
“The commemorative week will offer a lot to people who want to share in our love of the city,” Jezak said. “There’s going to be a number of free events. We want to try to get everybody involved.”
On Aug. 15, a film detailing the history of Maumee will be shown at the Maumee Indoor Theater from 6-9 p.m. The premiere will feature food from local businesses and a cash bar.
“Tickets are $25 and are still available,” Jezak said. “You can buy them at the theater or at the chamber of commerce. Supplies are limited, so act now, as they say.”
DVDs of the film will also be available for $10.
Jezak said the city administrator’s office worked with the planning committee to develop the celebration.
“It’s been a very open-ended process,” he said. “We’ve tried to come up with the best ideas that people would enjoy.”
The final day of the anniversary celebration consists of a tour of Maumee High School, as well as a food program titled “Taste of Maumee.” The Uptown Summer Fair is on Aug. 17 and features a street fair as well as live bands and food tasting.
“[The fair is] an event that’s been going on for about 30 years now,” Jezak said. “There’s games, vendors, food. It’s free admission and open to all. All sorts of people come to town, and we enjoy that.”
To fund the celebration, the city sold commemorative banners. Companies could purchase banners on city light poles for $250. Others costing $150 were hung around the city. Maumee sold 70 banners.
“As we speak, our last batch is being produced,” Jezak said. “We will have all the banners up by the time the anniversary rolls around and those will stay up through Dec. 1.”
Jezak said Maumee has experienced a revival due to its location.
“Transportation has always played a big role in Maumee’s development,” he said. “Today, we’re benefiting from our position at the crossroads of the turnpike and I-475, and we’re close to the city of Toledo, so all these things have come together to benefit the city of Maumee.”
Jezak said he hopes Maumee will continue to thrive.
“Maumee stands a good chance of being very successful in the future, provided that it retains its unique sense of history,” he said. “One of the real successes of Maumee is that it manages to be a modern community that hasn’t forgotten its past.
“Come visit! It doesn’t have to be during the festival,” he said. “If you’re a history aficionado, outdoorsman or just passing through, there’s always going to be something here for you.”
Visit maumee175.org for more information and a schedule of events.