This year is the 225th anniversary of the founding of Merrickville by William Merrick in 1793. An ad hoc committee has been working alongside community event planners to put together several events to commemorate this occasion, to coincide with Merrickville’s usual Spring and Summer festivities.
The official launch of the 225th anniversary celebrations will be a music festival at the Legion. They will be hosting a free afternoon of music on June 9, beginning at noon and running until 5 pm. The Blockhouse will continue the celebrations with their grand opening on June 23, complete with activities and historical displays in the Blockhouse Park.
Canada Day events will begin on July 1 at 10 am, with an outdoor ecumenical church service at Collar Hill Cemetery to honour William Merrick, followed by the parade, entertainment, a free lunch curtesy of the Lions Club and, of course, the fireworks at 10 pm.
Canalfest will be held from August 4-6, and will be a weekend full of festivities and events, along with villagers dressed in period costume. The 180th Merrickville Agricultural Fair and Steam Show, from August 10-12, will wrap up the Merrickville 225 festivities on the fairgrounds.
To enrich the heritage aspect of these events, a small working group, made up of Margo Heighton, Kevin Bridge and Dell Bower, have pulled together some photos of historical significance from the Merrickville and District Historical Society’s collection. These photos will be mounted on panels and be put on display at the five main events throughout the Summer. A special craft beer, called “Founders Ale”, has also been created by a local resident and will be available on tap at local restaurants to celebrate Merrickville 225. There are also two publications printed to commemorate Merrickville’s 225th anniversary. The Merrickville Spectator, published by Steve Hurndell, and the Merrickville 225 Commemorative Edition by W. Poapst and Patricia McAnish, will be available throughout the Village in May. They will both be single edition copies, designed to be collector items for villagers and visitors alike.