This will be the 24th consecutive Founder’s Day Celebration at Hickory Grove United Methodist Church. Saturday, Oct. 18 will begin a long tradition of celebrating the early pioneers who first settled in Madison County, farmed for a living and worshiped together. A hundred years ago, there were numerous churches all over the county and Hickory Grove was just one of the rural churches. Everything starts early with biscuits and sausage or ham in Cousin Mary Lou Buchanan’s Old Fashioned Country Kitchen. Her youngest son Glen will be just one of the cooks preparing the oven in the old wood burning stove.
We have dedicated our 24th Annual Founder’s Day Program to our oldest living member at Hickory Grove, Mrs. Eloise (Glass) Stewart, and she will have a prominent tent, sitting in her favorite chair. My momma always taught me to not tell ladies ages, but I will tell you that she has passed the century mark! We are sure she will have family members in the booth also. Be sure to come by and visit with Mrs. Eloise.
There is so much history that you can learn from Mrs. Eloise and on your visit to Founder’s Day, come and sit a spell and meet and talk with this super lady. One thing that really hit home with me, was the fact that she remembers when there were no cars in our county, and no roads to speak of. You might say that she has seen a lot of water go under the bridge. Her daughters, Benny Rose Stewart and Frances Copeland have a lot to be proud of. Both daughters are really close to their mother, and everyone at Hickory Grove is likewise proud of our oldest member!
We are a small church but Founder’s Day will be a really huge event. We have a lot of volunteers from surrounding churches that are a huge help to the Founder’s Day Event. If I tried to name those volunteers, I would really mess up and leave someone out, and I would not want to do that, so we just say a big thank you to them. We could not do this event without their loyal help!
Here is a list of some events that you will be able to enjoy on Saturday
• Ride the trolley up to the church from Verna Lee Williams’ pasture.
• Syrup making with juice from the cane mill
• Division of Forestry Display
• Bubba Greene’s antique display
• Wayne Vicker’s old engines
• Boiled peanuts that Willie Agner and Bobo planted and grew for the church
• Vegetable stand with sweet potatoes, corn and other delicious items
• Sweet corn boiled in the shuck, drenched in real butter
•The old Country Store, with crafts, candies and all sorts of goodies. Do your Christmas shopping early!
• The old log smokehouse with smoked sausage hanging from the ceiling. Buy some!
• Stephen’s world famous boston butt bar-b-que
• Big John Hudson and his brothers, sausage, pepper and onion dogs. Like the Fair!
• Home made ice cream
• Funnel cakes
• Sweet potato fries
• French fries
• Chicken pileau cooked in old wash pots.
• Singing stage under the trees starting at 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. when the preacher arrives.
• Face painting by Nada
• Mr. Beau Jangles the clown making balloon hats.
• The sewing booth
• Collard greens and hoe cakes booth
• Grilled peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
• Corn bean bag toss game
• Bobby Joe’s venison chili booth
• Sara’s candle making booth and other crafts
• Aunt Callie’s homemade cakes
• In the fellowship hall, will be cakes for sale made by members
• Quilting booth with Hilda Dixon
• Roy’s pear tart booth
• Re-caning old chairs…The Moore’s
• BB Gun shooting range for the kids.
• Butter churning booth
• Fried pork skins booth
• The Old School House with classes going on during the morning. There will be free books and stuffed animals for the kids who sit and listen in class.
• And don’t forget the Hickory Grove Garden. It is going great and all the vegetables are growing. Collards are about two feet tall already!
I may have left out some things that will be going on at Founder’s Day, so be sure to come and see what I left out. The most important thing about this event is that it is at church. For some reason, it is hard to get large crowds to come to worship services every Sunday. While you are at Founder’s Day, and you want to go inside our church for some quiet time with our Savior, then we welcome you to do so. We have an alter and you are welcome there also.
I heard my brother Randall say one time, “I just don’t understand how a person can raise a child without taking him or her to church every Sunday.” Pretty good advice I would say!