Village firms up plans for anniversary

Series: Hinsdale 150 | Story 15

As April 1 - the 150th anniversary of the village's official incorporation date - approaches, village officials are anticipating a variety of ways to mark the occasion.

Unfortunately April 1 falls on the Saturday after spring break.

"As a result, we have decided that our official date where we will be recognizing and celebrating the 150th of the village will be May 2," said Andrianna Peterson, assistant village manager.

The event will be held in conjunction with the Hinsdale Village Board meeting. Legislators and community members are invited to attend the meeting, where village trustees will pass a proclamation and host a reception following the conclusion of business.

Prior to that meeting, eateries in town will celebrate Restaurant Week in April, with nods and twists to village history.

"We want to maintain all our signature events. We just want to make them a little more special," Peterson said.

Also in April the Hinsdale Historical Society is presenting "Hinsdale in Lights - Celebrating 150 Years" April 21-23 at Immanuel Hall. Read more about the event in The Hinsdalean's April 13 issue on Page 7, which is devoted each week this year to covering anniversary events and village history.

Hinsdale's annual Restaurant Week, April 14-23, will give a nod to the anniversary with throwback drink specials and special menu items.

In July, to enhance the Independence Day parade, the village is looking to add some acts that don't normally participate. Peterson also encouraged community groups to march or build a float as part of the anniversary celebration.

"Maybe a retailer wants to partner with a nonprofit and do something special," she suggested.

Another summer celebration will take place following the last Uniquely Thursday concert on Aug. 17. The village will sponsor a laser light show using the south side of the Memorial Building as a backdrop.

"We're doing that in lieu of a fireworks display," Peterson said. "We did think about that, but we really think this is going to be a unique, safe and environmentally friendly way of really celebrating the village's anniversary."

As summer comes to a close, Peterson said she hopes work will begin on the patio reconstruction project on the south side of the Memorial Building. Officials are still finalizing the design, but Peterson anticipates there will be an opportunity for residents and businesses to donate bricks and possibly landscaping as part of the project. If the timing works out, the plaza might be dedicated at the Christmas Walk.

The holiday celebration will offer another opportunity to celebrate the 150th. Peterson said she's talking with restaurateurs and retailers about a comprehensive theme that would be translated into window displays, decorations, menu items and cocktails.

"We really want that to be extra special," she said. "We may have special amenities as part of those holiday themes."

Peterson is excited for residents who are not yet aware of the anniversary to learn more about it.

"What we want to do is start to get the word out about it a little bit more," she said. "You're going to start seeing the banners go up."

She also hopes residents, groups and organizations will find their own ways to celebrate this milestone anniversary, as they have contributed to the vibrancy and success of the community.

"While we're celebrating the village's 150th, we're also celebrating the contributions of these groups and organizations, because they are what has shaped and defined the Hinsdale brand as well," Peterson said.

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Pamela Lannom is editor of The Hinsdalean