Appropriately, the final Bicentennial event of this special year will be nostalgic for long-time residents of Miamisburg.
On Saturday, Dec. 8, the City, Bicentennial Committee and Miamisburg Merchants Association will jointly host the annual Community Holiday Celebration and bring back a popular Christmas tradition sure to stir old memories.
For many years, local holiday activities included a visit by Santa Claus to the former fire station on Central Avenue. Santa would arrive atop a fire truck, greet children at the station and distribute Christmas candy and an orange. In honor of Miamisburg’s Bicentennial, that event will be recreated for a new generation at the fire station located on First Street next to the Civic Center. He will arrive at approximately 3 p.m. immediately following the annual holiday parade.
“We wanted to wrap-up the Bicentennial in a special way, and Santa’s visit at the fire station was the best way we could think of to honor this community’s rich history,” Mayor Dick Church, Jr. said. “Everyone is invited to join in this special celebration and participate in one of Miamisburg’s great traditions.”
Another gift for residents that day will be a holiday concert by American Idol finalist Alexis Gomez at 7 p.m. Depending on weather, the concert will take place at either Riverfront Park or the Memorial Auditorium on Sixth Street.
The day’s full schedule includes:
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. - Home Party & Holiday Bazaar at Miamisburg Community Center
1 to 9 p.m. - Glice (artificial ice) open skate at Riverfront Park
2:30 p.m. - Parade along Central Avenue from Sixth Street to Riverfront Park
3 to 5 p.m. – Holiday-themed activities at Baum Opera House and Miamisburg Community Center. Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive at Fire Station on First Street; Horse-drawn carriage rides from Baum Opera House, Fire Station and Miamisburg Community Center
5 to 8 p.m. - Carolers, magicians, jugglers and musicians in Riverfront Park and along Main Street
6 p.m. - Mayor’s tree-lighting ceremony in Riverfront Park
6 to 10 p.m. - Luminary Walk in Veterans Memorial Park (also held on Friday, Dec. 7)
7 p.m. - Alexis Gomez concert in Riverfront Park or Memorial Auditorium, depending on weather
“A River Runs Through,” a documentary on the history of Miamisburg produced by the Miamisburg Historical Society, is now on sale at the Market Square Building from 1 to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The cost is $20. This commemorative video premiered at February’s Founders Day Dinner.
No celebration in Miamisburg is complete unless a parade leads the way. Maybe this is the perfect path to participation for your family, business or organization.
There will be two parades serving as bookends for the week-long celebration, an opening parade on June 16 and the closing parade on June 23. Each will be filled with fun and entertainment from various Shrine Temples, local churches and many groups. Band music will fill the air from several local high schools, The Ohio State University Alumni Band, the Kettering Civic Band, Miamisburg High School Alumni Band and others.
Parades will launch at 11 a.m. both days from the corner of Twelfth Street and Central Avenue near the Miamisburg Christian Church. Units will travel west on Central to downtown. There is no entry fee to participate, but the deadline is June 1.
If your group or family would like a spot in one or both Bicentennial parades, complete a registration form available on the Schedule of Events page or on PlayMiamisburg.com.
Transportation Notes: The Bicentennial parades on June 16 and June 23 will step-off at 11 a.m. at Central and Lawrence avenues. The parade will travel west on Central to Market Square, then travel south on Main Street. It will conclude at the corner of Main and Linden Avenue. During the parades, First through Eleventh streets will be blocked at Central until the parade passes. Traffic will resume on all streets as soon as the parade concludes.
Step back in time on Pioneer Day, Monday, June 18. There will be plenty of entertainment at Riverfront Park, with everything from a jug band to lumberjacks, and special events at Heritage Village at the corner of Lock Street and Old Main Street. It’s all courtesy of the Miamisburg Historical Society.
Riverfront Park entertainment -
Jack Pladdys is a nationally recognized square dance caller. He’ll be calling and dancers will be dancing. The audience will be encouraged to join in.
Stan the Magic “Pioneer” Man
Star City Dulcimers
The Vintage Ramblers will perform bluegrass music in the style of Flatt & Scruggs, Bill Monroe and other traditional artists.
Cincinnati Dancing Pigs - The Queen City’s premier Jug Band will astound with vocals and their exuberant antics.
Great Lakes Timber Show – Award winning, family-friendly show about lumberjacks and timber sports.
Traditional Arts and Crafts Demonstration - Hand-quilting, spinning fabric and threads into yarn, and a card weaver. With nothing more than colored yarn and simple cardboard squares, crafters can produce exquisitely patterned woven bands.
Stop at the Historical Society table in Riverfront Park to start or renew your Society membership. A shared heritage and a sense of history are priceless gifts for ourselves and for generations to come. Did you know that the word ‘souvenir’ is actually a French word meaning remembrance or memory? What better time to stock up on your favorite Bicentennial souvenirs and gear to show support for our community’s celebration!
Heritage Village Noon to 5 p.m.
Traditional Arts and Crafts - Basket-making and a blacksmith’s demonstration will be offered with a little history and shows how different things are made with tools of the time.
One Room Schoolhouse and Pioneer Life - Families will be taught about Miamisburg history in a fun and exciting way. Participants will enjoy meeting interpretive characters at the multi-building Museum.
Pioneer Families of Miamisburg are encouraged to sign a book at Heritage Village, which will be secured by the Historical Society to be used at future Miamisburg founding celebrations.
Liberty Carriage - Free horse-drawn wagon rides depart Heritage Village and travel to Riverfront Park, 1 to 5 p.m.
Petting Zoo - Cow, donkey, goat and sheep in an enclosure on Heritage Village front lawn.
Promenade – Miamisburg citizens dressed in pioneer attire will depart Heritage Village at 4 p.m. to walk down Main Street to Central Avenue and enter Riverfront Park.
The Miamisburg Bicentennial Celebration has something for everyone and that includes the outdoor enthusiast. Nature hiking, kayaking and paddle boarding are offered for free during the celebration.
Join us for a guided hike through Sycamore Trails Park on Wednesday, June 20 at 9 a.m. All hiking abilities are welcome. Participants will learn what the park may have looked like 200 years ago when Miamisburg was founded. Activities include discovering native and non-native vegetation, examining creek fossils and learning about the history of the land.
Please meet at the Sycamore Trails Playground between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. at the corner of Maue and Ashley Drive, next to the Sycamore Trails Aquatic Center at 400 S. Heincke Road. Please bring water and comfortable hiking shoes for this short hike through the park.
For those who prefer to experience downtown Miamisburg and the Great Miami River from the seat of a kayak, join us at Case Landing, near the Linden Ave. Bridge on Sunday, June 17 from 4-7 p.m. and Wednesday June 20 from 12 Noon-4 p.m. Wright State University will provide kayaks and stand up paddle boards at no cost. Basic paddling instruction is provided on shore before venturing onto the river. Participants can try out paddling between the bridges of Linden Avenue and 725. All participants must sign a waiver and wear a life jacket (provided). Please bring water, comfortable athletic clothing, shoes that can get wet and don’t forget the sunscreen.
No registration is necessary for these Bicentennial Outdoor Programs. For more information, please contact Miamisburg Parks and Recreation at 937-866-8999 or visit www.PlayMiamisburg.com.
Is your family a part of Miamisburg’s long and colorful history? If so, let the Miamisburg Historical Society and Bicentennial Committee hear from you.
Make your mark on this Star City party and answer some questions about your family with a game of “How Blue and White Are Your Roots?” Answer questions about your family history in Miamisburg, and your family history will be recognized for being True Blue with a place in the new time capsule!
1. How many generations of your family have lived in Miamisburg/Miami Township? Details.
2. How many generations of your family have graduated from MHS? Names and years.
3. Several sets of triplets have been born in the Burg. Does this include your family? Names.
4. Can your roots be traced back to founding families? How?
5. Has your family owned a business in Miamisburg? Details.
6. Have any members of your family served on City Council or as Mayor? City employees? School Board? Teachers? Names and positions.
7. Has your family made significant contributions to the City? Describe
8. Do you live in a family home/property? Where and number of generations.
All responses should be received by June 2 and may be emailed to MHSociety@att.net with a subject line of Time Capsule 2018 or mailed to the Miamisburg Historical Society, attn. Time Capsule 2018, 4 N. Main St., Miamisburg, Ohio 45342
In honoring the eras and events that have made Miamisburg the Star City, it is only appropriate the very beginnings of this area be recognized. So on June 16-17 the City’s Bicentennial Celebration will kick-off at Beachler Field with Drums on the Miami honoring the Native American heritage that runs so deep in Miamisburg.
Long before Peter and John Treon, Emanuel Gebhart and Jacob Kercher ever set foot on the ground that became Miamisburg, Native Americans resided along the banks of the Great Miami River and established villages for our first citizens. The presence of the Miamisburg Indian burial mound, and the treasures spewed from the fertile fields in the area, are evidence of another time in history for this place we call home.
Drums on the Miami will offer a unique look into Native American life through dance, music, stories and food.
Families will have the opportunity to see and learn the meaning of dances performed at a Native American Pow Wow and the significance of the clothing worn by the dancers.
Chief Logan and Tecumseh will discuss their lives and the part they played in early American history. Other speakers will share the history of the Miamisburg Mound and the Native American activity that took place in the Miamisburg area.
The sound of the Native American flute is familiar to us all. An Oglala Lakota will explain the meaning and history of flutes and demonstrate how these melodious instruments are made.
There will also be a number of Native American vendors displaying items made in the way of their ancestors. They will happily answer questions and will have wares available for purchase. There will even be a vendor offering a taste of buffalo.
Beachler Field is located on Tenth Street. Bring your own chairs for comfort.
Schedule of Activities (both days)
10:00 Welcome and Opening Ceremony
10:45 Grass Dance
11:05 History of Miami Valley Indians
11:45 Jingle Dress Dance
12:05 Chief Cornstalk Speaks
12:45 Men’s Fancy Dance
1:05 Native American Flute
1:45 Women’s Shawl Dance
2:05 Children’s Candy Dance
2:25 Tecumseh Speaks
3:05 Men’s Straight Dance
3:25 Story of Miamisburg Mound
4:00 Blanket Dance
4:20 Men’s Traditional Dance
4:40 Closing Remarks and Farewell
Maybe you prefer a simple moustache. Or, is it the handlebar that catches your eye? Is it a simple, clean goatee that adds the right touch? Maybe you are the full-on lumberjack beard kind of guy? Regardless, now is the time to get that facial hair growing and join the Brothers of the Brush.
Brothers of the Brush is a celebration tradition for Miamisburg, and becoming a member of this Brush is an honor for Bicentennial participants. While men are encouraged to grow some type of facial hair reflective of the time when Miamisburg was founded, there is a price to pay.
To grow a beard or moustache, or combination thereof, you must purchase a license for 25 cents. The holder should be able to produce the license or face dire consequences not limited to “jail” time. You never know where Brothers of the Brush Police will show their bearded faces!
Are you challenged in the facial hair area? Fear not, you can escape public ridicule by becoming a member of the Smoothies Club. A 25-cent license in this club will forgive you the inability to sprout the fuzz.
Growing efforts will be rewarded on June 23 at the Center Stage in Riverfront Park. This is when there will be judging of the longest beard, longest handlebar moustache, Best Moustache Judge’s Choice, Best Full Beard Judge’s Choice, Best Groomed Facial Hair Judge’s Choice and People’s Choice awards. Trophies will be taken home by all winners.
Licenses are on sale now and can be purchased from the Bicentennial Headquarters in the Market Square Building. Larry Williams and Joe Stebbins are serving as committee chairs. Souvenir pins are also available for $1.
Local ladies get a day to themselves on Thursday, June 21. The scheduled begins with nine holes at Mound Golf Course at 8 a.m. Tickets are $25/player and includes a cart, a sleeve of golf balls, towel and golf tees. There will be lots of prizes at the end of the event. Sign-up at Mound.
Or perhaps you’d be interested in the various businesses in our downtown area? Gather at 9:30 a.m. on the Taste of Wine patio, 90 S. Main Street, to begin a guided walking tour of our historic downtown business district. A $5 ticket provides participants a brochure highlighting historic businesses and, at the end of your walk, you’ll enjoy a delicious pastry at Bakery 151.
More of a history buff? How about a free, guided Cemetery Walk of St. John’s Cemetery, which is over 200 hundred years old, at the corner of S. Gebhart Church Road and Maue Road, beginning at 10:30 a.m. St. John’s Cemetery is one of the oldest burial (and still existing) sites in southern Montgomery County.
Feeling hungry? For only $10, lunch will be served at noon at the Baum Opera House at 15 S. First Street. The program features a fashion show reflecting authentic styles from each decade of the past 200 years. At 1:30 p.m. a free quilt show will feature a new quilt created by members of the Miamisburg Monday Night Club, which will be auctioned in a silent auction. The Baum is a mansard-style opera house built in 1884.
More history? Walk off that tasty lunch by touring some of our city’s lovely historic homes along tree-lined Linden Avenue. Everyone will meet at Trinity Park (across from Trinity Church, 203 E. Linden Avenue) at 3:30 p.m., rain or shine. A $5 fee provides participants with a brochure highlighting the homes on Millionaire’s Row and will conclude in the English Manor Bed and Breakfast with a glass of wine and delicious cheese board.
Do you enjoy playing cards? A Bicentennial Euchre Party will conclude Ladies Day. A refresher course begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by the games at 6:30 p.m. at the Community Center (formerly Miamisburg Senior Adult Center), 305 E. Central Ave. The $10 tickets will be sold to individuals ages 18 and up and sold only until June 1. You can expect coffee, tea, lemonade and light snacks to be available at breaks between games. There will be many prizes to be won. Did you know this card game has been around since the year 1860?
Tickets for Ladies Day events are available from the Miamisburg Historical Society in the Market Square Building.
The Founders Day Dinner was a sold out event Feb. 20 at the Baum Opera House downtown.
The program included live entertainment provided by Miamisburg High School students and the premiere of a recently produced video on the history of Miamisburg entitled “A River Runs Through.” Mayor Dick Church, Jr. also introduced a newly created board game entitled Miamisburg-Opoly that is for sale to the public and announced that local historian Bobbye Sweny has been named honorary chair of the City’s Bicentennial celebration.