We did, that's who. Who is "we"?
To those unfamiliar with what it takes
to put on an event, it took thousands of volunteers, city and county
employees, elected officials, countless numbers from Lincoln and
Logan County who made the Lincoln Sesquicentennial a grand success.
The grand celebration took hundreds of people thousands of hours to
It was a great week and a half in
Lincoln. Crowds filled the events; locals, visitors from out of town
and out of state flocked to Lincoln to help us celebrate 150 years
as an established city. It was the most fun-filled, historical event
seen in Lincoln in 50 years.
The sesquicentennial committee headed
by Mayor Beth Davis met for two years. Collaboration was needed
between city and county government, law enforcement agencies, street
and alley maintenance departments, and assistance came from the
state of Illinois in several areas. Untold hours were poured into
making the sesquicentennial an event to be remembered and talked
about with pride for generations.
The Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of
Commerce, Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau and Main Street Lincoln
lent their organizing expertise and support.
Local agencies that prepared and served
in safety and protection included the Logan County Sheriff's
Department, Lincoln City Police, Lincoln City Fire Department,
Lincoln Rural Fire Department, Logan County Paramedic Association,
ESDA and LEPC. They all provided hundreds of hours of extra security
for the families and local businesses to be kept safe and protected.
We are particularly fortunate to have
two horse teams available to us, the Logan County Sheriff's
Auxiliary Posse and the Logan County Horse Search and Rescue, who
are trained in the topmost effective search methods in the world.
The horse provides an excellent viewing perspective, and they are
able to move through blocked streets and crowds with speed not
afforded by any better means. The teams actually put their training
to use in searching for an 11-year-old boy one evening.
City department heads have been in
weekly and multiple-times-per-week meetings with each other, event
coordinators and others. They have spent hundreds of excess hours
planning with no extra compensation.
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Bob Thomas from the fairgrounds was in
charge of trash. Lincoln Assistant Streets Superintendent Tracy
Jackson said he had six guys to do the cleanup in the city. Heavy
rains fortunately helped in the cleanup, washing all the cups and
stuff into the street gutters, where the street sweeper was able to
clean them up. They all did a great job, Jackson said. He breathed a
big sigh and said, "We finished at 2:30 today (Tuesday)."
Jackson said he is glad that he leaves
for vacation next week. He chuckled as he commented about his
predecessor, Donnie Osborne, who retired the end of May, "Donnie
left at the right time."
Chief Rich Montcalm said he had six
extra guys on each shift during the events. "The weekend was normal
-- calmer really," he said. "There were no incidents related to
crime." He said that they had checked with other communities to see
how to handle special-event crowds, particularly family-oriented
events where there would be alcohol available. Springfield
recommended having lots of easily identified security.
There were approximately 500-600
volunteer security hours put in just on Friday and Saturday evenings
at the downtown stages. The volunteers wore bright yellow T-shirts
marked "SECURITY" on the back.
Volunteer chairmen organized events and
all the details that encompassed them. Does anybody know who drove
all those bands to and from the airports? They got back and forth
somehow. In fact, they were driven between here and St. Louis by
volunteer drivers. So many details, more than can be imagined, that
took great care, cooperation and coordination with many others to
The general consensus by those who put
in all those hours is that it was well worthwhile. Everyone asked
said that they would do it again but probably not for another 50
If you came out and participated in
seeing any of the events or displays, then you know how wonderful
everything was and how much everyone deserves a pat on the back.
A letter was read from the Gene Martin
family at Tuesday evening's city council meeting. The family has
just moved here and wanted to say how much they enjoyed the art and
balloon fest and sesquicentennial.
were accepted like jewels when read in the council chamber. Do you
have a little ink, paper and a stamp to spare?