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Big things planned for sesquicentennial

At least one list is ready. The ALEX150 list of people, places, things, ideas, landmarks or anything that has helped shaped Alexandria into the great place we have today has been determined by the nominations sent in by you, the people.

Co-sponsored by the Douglas County Historical Society and the Douglas County Library Friends and Foundation, the list, narratives and display will all be shared during Alexandria's sesquicentennial celebration.

The list, and stories that go along with it, will bring back lots of memories for many of you.

Statehood Week in Minnesota will kick off May 11. A celebration will be held at the capital in St. Paul on that day. (Congress passed and President Lincoln signed the act granting statehood to Minnesota on May 11, 1858.)

Check the Web site for complete listings of everything that is happening statewide in celebration of the sesquicentennial.

The Alexandria Sesquicentennial Grand Parade is scheduled to "piggy-back" with the Minnesota State Firemen's Convention Parade on Saturday, June 7. The list of parade registrations keeps growing as interested parties accept the Alexandria Firefighters invitation to participate. Parade applications are available at the historical society, or check with local firefighters.

The Holmes City Sesquicentennial Parade will be held on Saturday, June 21. Event planners say that even though Holmes City is small, the parade and celebration will be big!

The list of things happening for sesquicentennial celebrations starts before June, however. District 206 Community Education is offering a "historic hayride" on May 21, with narration of our historic downtown area and the silk stocking district, provided by members of the historical society.

Other programs of historic proportions are also offered through Community Education. Check their list of offerings in their spring catalog.

The list of business contributors for sesquicentennial events is growing by leaps and bounds. There is plenty of time for businesses to get involved, both monetarily and with events. Following are a few highlights:

• Pete's County Market is sponsoring a Medallion Hunt on May 11 in conjunction with Statehood Week. Pete's will also sponsor "The World's Largest Ice Cream Social" in June.

• Kyle's Barber Shop is sponsoring the ALEX150 beard contest. Simply stop down at Kyle's on Broadway to register.

• Clara Olson of Hair Profile's is sponsoring a Hairstyles 1858-2008 style show.

• The Runestone Museum will continue to celebrate its 50th anniversary in June with a "Day at the Fort."

• The Alexandria Area Arts Association will present an Alexandria-themed play, Good Deeds and Great People, written by our local playwright, Kevin Lee.

The list of events already planned for our area is too long to include in today's column. There is definitely something for everyone, as we all celebrate a long list of people, places, things, achievements, landmarks and more for Alexandria, Holmes City and Minnesota.

Watch the Echo Press every week for more sesquicentennial information, as the list of events continues to grow.