Old Home Week committees — ready, set ........

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
In this photo from 2007, then Old Home Week president Jeff Shank presents the infamous “tie” to Ben Thomas Jr., who is finishing preparations for the upcoming triennial.

The countdown is on for the 37th Triennial Old Home Week. It will be here when the first week of August rolls around.

"The plans are finalized, " said Ben Thomas Jr. "As president I am extremely excited, especially as to how hard all the committees and volunteers have worked and cooperated to bring this to the community."

The 40 committees have been meeting since January, and are preserving many of the favorite and traditional activities, but also adding some new events to the busy schedule.

Back on tap are the Sunday Cantata, Tuesday and Wednesday pageant, reminiscing series, flower show, entertainment venues at Jerome R. King Playground and Center Square all week, and the Friday evening concert and fireworks.

Thomas stopped reciting the list. "I mean, there's so much and I'm going to miss something."

New activities will mean even more things for residents and visitors to try to cram into the week. Three guided bicycle tours of Antrim Township are set for riders of all abilities. Graduates from the 1970s have a combined reunion planned. And people can go to where it all began, Sandy Hollow along the Conococheague Creek. Just as Philip Baer rounded up the old boys in 1902 for a picnic, in 2010 everyone will be welcome to spend some time there on specified days. Picnic baskets will be available from a Boy Scout troop.

"The picnic at Sandy Hollow will be phenomenal," Thomas said. "I can imagine people getting their pictures taken there."

July 30 to Aug.  8

For the 37th time, Old Home Week will be held the first week of August, but seven days just can't contain all the events. The headquarters in the northwest corner of Center Square will open Friday, July 30 from noon to 3 p.m. with Bob and Jeannie Johnston again serving as registrars.

"By that time all the window displays will be out," Thomas noted, "and there is a lot of foot traffic downtown."

The badges, with a photograph of Baer and the boys at the creek 108 years ago, are still $6. They gain wearers admittance to the town and township bus tours, adult dance, Greencastle-Antrim Lioness Club flower show, and pageant 'Those Were the Days.' The price is remaining the same as previous years to keep Old Home Week affordable during the recession, Thomas said.

While every day is packed with things to do, there is still one late night event not to be missed. The unofficial opening, to be staged 35 hours after the official opening, begins at 10:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 1. The community is invited to the sing-along in Center Square, rain or shine, to join co-chairs Russ Clever and Frank Mowen harmonizing on 'The Old Gray Mare' and other tunes.