It was a perfect day for a celebration! The skies were clear and the mood was rejoiceful as Lavaca celebrated its 100th Birthday on Saturday, October 5! It appeared that the entire town had turned out for the occasion.
At 11:00 am, a small herd of cattle was driven down the Main Street of town, celebrating our town having been named for the Spanish word for cow, back in the 1880-90s. The cows and horses were followed by floats, four-wheelers, football players, cheerleaders, former graduating classes, antique cars, fire trucks, police cars and much more!
The people along the street were encouraged to follow the parade to the festivities at City Hall. There, the city was providing food and drinks to the citizens as a great band played for everyone. Close to 12 noon, Mayor Hugh Hardgrave spoke and presented a plaque to Hattie Smithson for being Lavaca’s Oldest Citizen, just short of her own centennial. Cliff Barnett was presented an award for being Lavaca’s Oldest Veteran, having served in World War II. Councilwoman Lorie Robertson presented a greeting from our governor, Asa Hutchinson.
The festivities turned back uptown to the historic displays provided by the Military Road Museum. Tables of cotton candy, popcorn and other goodies were sold in a booth near the site of a Silent Auction. The auction benefited the proposed creation of an outdoor classroom for the Middle School. A huge table, 10×10 square was the scene of 100 cakes, each sponsored by local families, businesses or in memory of passed loved ones. Some were even in memory of businesses in the past history of the town. Lavaca’s own General Tammy Hutchins-Frye gave a short speech and then cut the cake where everyone ate to their fill and beyond.
The final event of this day was the “Woman-Less Beauty Pageant.” Three brave (?) men, Dallas Robertson, Gene Clearwater, and Jerry Atkins, dressed as ladies and competed for the coveted prize of Miss Centennial! Each of them was asked questions and had a brief talent. It was extremely funny and the crowd was sure enjoying them make a spectacle of themselves.
Lavaca is a wonderful town with wonderful people. General Frye remarked about how our little town closely resembles the fictional town of Mayberry RFD. People here sit on their porches, rarely meet a stranger, help those in need and come to each others rescue when asked.
It was a fantastic birthday party! People are already anticipating the next gathering, even asking if we were celebrating birthday 101! I believe they may just wait a while, or at least until they recover from this one.