Tolland has a pretty big birthday coming up, and it's time to start planning the party.
The Tolland 300th Anniversary Committee and the Tolland Historical Society are kicking off the celebration's fundraising efforts and more on Saturday, May 12.
A number of different projects begin Saturday, including the sale of 300th Anniversary merchandise at the farmers' market on Tolland Green from 9 a.m. until noon.
It also marks the beginning of the slogan contest for the 300th anniversary, which is open to Tolland third-graders to high school seniors.
"We want the slogan to be catchy, but also to capture the flavor of the town," said committee member Kate Farrish. The committee will reveal the winning slogan during the Celebrate Tolland event in September. There will also be a number of winners honored in each age group, from which the final slogan will be selected.
Entry forms can be found at the Tolland 300th Anniversary website.
And finally, the committee will be sending out a fundraising brochure to local businesses and residents asking for their support as the celebrations gear up. There are different levels of donations available, each with a signature Tolland name, like "Tolland Green-level" or "Shenipsit Lake-level."
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As the planning efforts gain momentum, Tolland 300th Anniversary Committee President Celeste Senechal said that she hopes many residents and organizations get involved.
"Our hope is that this will be a very inclusive celebration," she said. "We're trying to include all age ranges, singles and families."
And there are already a number of fantastic events that residents can help plan, including:
- Charter Day, on May 12, 2015, which will feature a reception on Tolland Green
- The town-wide gala, on May 16, 2015, which will be a large, formal dance for all town residents
- Night of Lights, on September 19, 2015 (the same day as Celebrate Tolland) which may feature a laser light show. There will also be a large parade from Tolland Green to the high school that afternoon.
- A possible series of historic hikes around Tolland
- A trail of important Tolland markers from the Tolland Historical Society
There are a number of committees dedicated to all parts of the celebration, all of which are still looking for more volunteers.
And more initiatives and fundraisers will be rolled out every May 12, since the date will be recognized as Charter Day in 2015. Records show that the state granted Tolland the right to have a charter on May 12, 1715.
Anyone interested in pitching in this year can attend the next Tolland 300th Anniversary Committee meeting on June 28 at 7:30 p.m. The location has not yet been decided.
For the latest information on the Tolland 300th Anniversary Committee and its events, visit the organization's website.
Also be sure to check out a video of committee leader Celeste Senechal talking about the upcoming celebrations, courtesy of Perne Maynard.