Old Town festival to celebrate past
Celebrate old Port Aransas at the first Old Town Festival Saturday, Nov. 25. Activities will include storytelling, a showing of the 2005 Story Telling Festival DVD, a photo slideshow of Port Aransas, a parade, a wine and cheese event and a street dance.
The event is sponsored by the Port Aransas Preservation and Historical Association (PAPHA).
Tales of yesteryear on the island will be told by storytellers at Bilmore and Son Hardware, the Art Center for the Islands, Susan Castor Collection, Port A Gallery, Gibbs Cottages, in front of the Community Center and Millie's Resale Shop, at Souvenir City, the Home Store and Shorty's.
Storytellers will be Marcy Mathews Ward Thomas, Eva Mercer Westmoreland, Rose Smithey, Marguerite Smith Moore, Marie Ousley Stiewig, Mary Jo Brundrett Matthews, Ben Brundrett, Tootie Littleton Barnes, Jed Brundrett, Nancy Smith Teller, Vivi Ousley See, Leslie Willey Jr., Patricia Ann Littleton Goodwin, Keith Farley, Gilbert Gibbs, Bill Smith, Matt Ward and Tina Smith Rabalais. Anyone else willing to talk may contact Mary Jo Matthews at (361) 443-8231 to be included.
Bagpipers and parade marshal Marcy Thomas will lead the parade on a historic route starting at Pelican's Landing parking lot on Alister Street at Brundrett. It will progress from there west on Brundrett Street, south on Oleander, east on Roberts crossing Alister Street, left on Church Street, right on Oaks Street crossing Station Street, left on Mercer Street, left on White Street crossing Station Street, ending up at the back entrance of the Tarpon Inn.
Participants are asked to gather between 3:30 and 3:45 p.m. for the parade.
The stroll will include a look at the outside of the old Sears house, Gibbs Cottages, the Community Center, the old Alister house, the old Catholic church, the Mercer Cemetery, the old Studeman house, the old Farley house and the Tarpon Inn. Sign up for the parade with Pam Greene by calling (361) 443-4683 or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or just show up early. Those not participating are invited to gather along the route to watch.
Wine and cheese for a donation of $10 will be served at the Tarpon Inn courtyard during a presentation to PAPHA by the Texas Historical Commission and the City of Port Aransas.
A street dance will be held in front of Shorty's on Tarpon Street. Project Graduation volunteers will be on hand with snacks and drinks for sale to raise money for their big night. The country music band playing for the donation-only dance will be Rob-n-Rich.
Music by Slaid Cleaves at Third Coast will begin at 8 p.m., with a portion of the proceeds to go to PAPHA.
A constant photo slideshow of more than 4,000 photos acquired by PAPHA will be shown Saturday at the Mustang Island Art Gallery, 222 State Hwy. 361.
The DVD of the 2005 Storytelling Festival that includes photos depicting the tales will be shown continuously at the Cotter Street Coffee House, 162 W. Cotter Ave.
Raffle tickets will be sold for a chance to win a painting of the old chapel on the hill by Alicia Dreessen at the Tarpon Inn courtyard. The painting will be on display during the presentation from 5 to 7 p.m., The painting is framed and ready to hang. After the festival, it will be on display at the Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce-Tourist Bureau until the drawing. Raffle tickets costing $20 also will be sold at the chamber and at the Family Center IGA courtesy booth. The drawing will be held at the chamber on Monday, Dec. 18. Proceeds from the sales will go to PAPHA.
A poster commemorating the event will be for sale at the Port A Gallery with the profits going to PAPHA. The poster depicts the old Sears house.
PAPHA, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is holding a fund drive for acquiring and preserving the old Sears house on Oleander Street that is in danger of being torn down. The hope is to restore it to use as a museum and starting point for historic walking tours.
Donations may be made to a special account at the American Bank or mailed to the PAPHA Campaign Fund, P.O. Box 677, Port Aransas, TX 78373, with a memo of designation for preserving the Sears house. All contributions are tax deductible and a charitable contribution form is available upon request.
The festival was organized to promote awareness of the association's fund drive, to encourage history and art awareness, and to promote shopping in Port Aransas.
OLD TOWN FESTIVAL
SCHEDULE 2-3:30 P.M. .............. STORYTELLING 4-5 P.M. ............................. PARADE 5-7 P.M. ............... WINE AND CHEESE AND PRESENTATION 7 P. - MIDNIGHT .......STREET M DANCE