2012 Green Creek Heritage Festival a memorable day

Published 6:03 pm Friday, September 21, 2012

Hats off to Krista Haynes and the many volunteers who worked so hard to make the Green Creek Heritage Festival so wonderful! It was a memorable day, indeed.

This picture, dated circa 1914, was on display in the history room at the Green Creek Heritage Festival on Sept. 8. Names of the ladies are not known, but may have been teachers at the school. The large building in this picture served as the first consolidated school in Green Creek township. This building was painted white later on, and usually served as classrooms. However, the large room at right was sometimes used for a basketball court, but after the new brick gym was built in 1936, the large room served as a classroom again. The smaller room at left was a classroom for many years, but the first lunchroom at Green Creek High School opened in that room about 1944. This room later reverted back to a classroom because a separate lunchroom building was constructed nearby. This new building served as a lunchroom for a number of years, and is still in use today. It is now called the Ruritan building. (photo submitted by Opal Sauve)

Each year, I marvel, as the festival activities unfold, that things go so well. This smooth operation is the direct result of hundreds of dedicated people who give of their time and talents in order to give this “gift” to the community. Many of these volunteers have worked every year since 1999, when the first Green Creek Heritage Festival was held. Also, many of these volunteers are former Green Creek School students who have a special love for the Green Creek Community Center, where the festival is held.  Thanks to everyone who worked or donated.
I have received lots of favorable comments on the numerous activities at the festivities, including demonstrations, displays, crafts, live animals, the history room, the general store, the very popular car and truck show, the delicious BBQ, and of course, the wonderful music.
During the 78 years that Green Creek School was in operation, thousands of students got their formal education there. Many people returned to their alma mater to bring their children and grandchildren to the heritage festival, and a number of former students were excited to find their pictures on display in the Green Creek History Room. However, we need to borrow more pictures to copy. If anyone has annuals, class pictures, or photos from 1960s, 1970s or 1980s at Green Creek School, please call me. We would like to copy those pictures or annuals for use at next year’s Green Creek Heritage Festival.
As some of you already know, I was deeply saddened about the death of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. If you remember, his words were “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” which made his name a household word and made America very proud.
Years later, I was privileged to give the invocation at a conference where Neil Armstrong was guest speaker. I, along  with my boss (at the time), Hugh Morton Jr., sat at the head table with the astronaut and about six other people. When Hugh Morton, who already knew the astronaut, started to introduce me, Armstrong stood up and came over to shake my hand. I was excited, honored and overwhelmed at the same time.
For the next hour, this most famous of astronauts chatted with us as if we were old friends. Armstrong asked where my home was, so he learned about Green Creek and Sandy Plains during that  hour. (He had been my hero since I had watched his first steps on the moon on live television on July 20, 1969.)
I really loved Armstrong’s speech at that conference. He was a true patriot. His great love for this country was apparent throughout our conversations and his speech. Armstrong was also a true gentleman; soft-spoken, easy to talk to, down-to earth, very gracious, incredibly humble and an extremely nice person. He is the only person I have ever met, except for former President  Ronald Reagan, who ranks that high on my “hero  list.”
A reminder: Schools are back in session so please drive carefully, slow down, watch for students, school buses and congested traffic wherever you drive, especially during school hours. We have heard of  several “near-misses” lately. Remembering how precious each young person’s life is will help you to practice patience and to be more careful.
When I think about children and learning, I’m reminded of Daniel Webster’s quote: “If we work upon marble, it will perish; if we work upon brass, time will efface it; if we rear temples, they will crumble into dust; but if we work upon immortal minds, if we imbue them with principles, with justness and love of our fellowman, we engrave on those tablets (minds) something which will brighten to all eternity.”
Happy birthday to Rhonda Forster, Scott Waddell, John Blanton, Lori Price, Wyllene Shields, Carole McIntire, Jane Horne, Bruce Collins, Rita Sports, Tim Linder and Peggy and James Stott.
Among those celebrating wedding anniversaries this month are Regina and Ricky Pate, John and Edith Edwards, James and Kay Pack and Kerry and Sheila Ford.
If you have news of this area, please call me at 828-863-2437.

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