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Wesson celebrates history on Founders’ Day

The Wesson Chamber of Commerce is combining its Founders’ Day celebration on April 28-29 with Mississippi’s Bicentennial party.

The theme is, “Wesson Founders’ Day — A Celebration of State, County and Town History.” Wesson residents will celebrate Mississippi’s history through a variety of events catered to young children, farmers and producers.

“Growing up in Wesson, I thought I pretty much knew a lot of its history.  I have learned new things and I hope those who attend the celebration will take away some new knowledge of Mississippi and Wesson,” said Chamber board member Deemie Letchworth. “Putting together a weekend to celebrate the state’s 200th birthday along with celebrating Wesson’s history has been a huge learning experience for me.”

Starting Monday, store windows in downtown Wesson will host various historical items to showcase Mississippi and its local artists. Copiah-Lincoln Community College’s Evelyn W. Oswalt Library will also host artwork and handmade quilts from local artists.

Students from Wesson Attendance Center, like Nicky Cone’s fourth grade elementary class, will also be participating in the celebration. They will be making steamboats to present to the Chamber.

The Chamber will judge the steamboats prior to Founders’ Day and award first, second and third prizes along with a cash award for the high school classification. All projects will be on display downtown April 29.

The Chamber will be partnering with Make Mine Mississippi — a program that supports manufacturers, processors or producers in the state — to support local farmers and producers in Copiah, Lincoln and Lawrence counties. Make Mine Mississippi will have a booth to provide local artisans information on how the program can help them market and promote their items across the state.

Vendors will be selling homemade jellies, as well as chickens, goats and other animals at the trade show.

Founders’ Day weekend will kick off with Co-Lin’s Jazz Band April 28 at 6:30 p.m. with a gospel concert afterward at 7 p.m.

Flea market vendors will be open for business beginning April 29 at 8 a.m. Vendors are still being accepted, Letchworth said.

The opening ceremony is at 10 a.m. with the parade set to roll at 11 a.m. The parade lineup will start at 10:30 a.m. at the old Sunflower Building north of town and will travel through downtown to Decell Methodist Church, ending back at the starting point.

Dedications of Wesson’s new playground and park area and the Wesson Boy Scout building will be at noon. Musical performances will take place from 1-3:30 p.m., including an Elvis impersonator, Co-Lin Drumline and Janet Schmidt.

Additional live entertainment will be 4-11 p.m. with a fireworks display starting at 9.

“We are honored to be celebrating 200 years of Mississippi’s rich history. Our Chamber board has worked very hard to bring several new attractions to our event this year,” Chamber president Stephen Ashley said. “There will be vendors selling just about everything, games for kids and adults alike, a parade, Elvis, live bands, street dance and an awesome fireworks show. There is literally something for everyone.”

The celebration was made possible by a grant provided by the Mississippi Humanities Council, through support from the Mississippi Development Authority.

For more information, contact Letchworth at 601-643-5000.