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Chili Historical Society celebrates 50th
The Chili Historical Society is marking its 50th anniversary this year and a celebration is planned Saturday, June 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the historic Streeters Inn, 4145 Union Street, Chili.
Chili Historical Society member Priscilla Beeman says festivities include a yard sale featuring items donated by Society members. RJS, Jr. Nursery will have flowers, plants and shrubs for sale.
Demonstrations will be given throughout the day by woodcarvers, quilters and the Chili Art Group, and “enactors” will be on hand in period costume, organizers say.
Refreshments will be available from Charlie’s Holiday Hots from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Joan, also a member of the Chili Historical Society, encourages families and people of all ages to come out and visit Streeters on the 14th. She explains that the events will help “parents to take their children on a trip to the past.”
The celebration is taking place on Flag Day, Joan and Beeman note, and they say additional activities include a historic scavenger hunt as well as tours of the Streeters Inn, which was built in 1811.
The Inn was acquired by Monroe County in 1999 at the request of the Chili Historical Society, and it serves as their headquarters and museum.
Beeman says the society is currently working to re-interpret the Streeters Inn kitchen – the oldest part of the federal-style brick home – in memory of former Chili Historical Society President Dorothy (Dot) McCarthy. “Dot made the best baked beans in the world,” Beeman fondly remembers. She says McCarthy requested that donations in her memory be used for preservation work at Streeters.
“We would like to thank the Hubbard Springs Garden Club for all the work they do with maintenance of the landscape at Streeters,” Beeman adds.
The Chili Historical Society continues into its next half-century with the same mission it has always had – to preserve the history of Chili through programs and events.
It’s important for children and young people to visit local museums such as Streeters, Joan explains. “Children cannot comprehend the past without visually seeing and touching – we must keep the past alive and educate the youth of our country.”
Joan, who has traveled extensively around the U.S. and Europe, says historic structures are important and that unfortunately in this country, we now build with the intention of tearing a structure down in 20 or 30 years. She remembers the cathedrals she saw in Spain which she says stand in glory centuries after their construction.
“They remind us of the past,” she says, and adds that this country must strive to do the same.
The Chili Historical Society welcomes new members. “We are both social and educational,” Beeman says. You don’t have to be a Chili resident to join.
Members meet monthly April through December (with the exception of July) and meetings feature speakers on historical topics. Annual membership fees are $10 for an individual or $15 for a family.
The Chili Historical Society also welcomes historical donations. An ice-box is currently needed for the work on the Streeters’ kitchen, Beeman and Joan say.
For additional information about the Chili Historical Society or to make a donation, contact Priscilla Beeman at 594-4015.
For information about vendor table availability, call Beeman or Carole Thoms at 889-2596.