150 years, 150 hours

Laramie’s 150th anniversary could be celebrated by including businesses, organizations and pre-established events year-round in 2018, Mayor Andi Summerville said.

During a joint meeting between the councilors and commissioners Tuesday, the two groups of policymakers offered suggestions about how best to honor both the city and county being founded in 1868.

“One of the things we’re going to put together is a branding package to give out to businesses and organizations so they can celebrate in their own way,” Summerville said. “We want this to be a community celebration, not just a city or a county event.”

Members of local historical organizations, city staff and county representatives hosted an inaugural meeting for a 150th anniversary ad hoc planning committee earlier in November and pitched the idea of allowing events like Laramie Jubilee Days and Freedom Has a Birthday to use the branding to create individual anniversary celebrations rather than focusing on a single anniversary event, she said.

“We should make sure the students in Albany County know about the 150 year celebration,” Councilor Pat Gabriel said. “We could have teams put together Power Point presentations and take them around to the schools throughout the year.”

Laramie Plains Museum Historian Kim Viner said he knew of at least one volunteer already planning a similar campaign, but with help from the council and commission, the effort could grow.

“I think it would be great to reach out to some of the national organizations for women’s history,” Albany County Commission Chairman Tim Chesnut said. “I think we should let them know who we are and what we know about women’s history here.”

Chesnut also said the council and commission should consider ways of celebrating people who played significant roles in establishing the city, such as the Ivinsons.

In an effort to directly benefit the community, Councilor Joe Shumway suggested both the governing bodies engage in community service throughout the year.

“I would like for us to have a chance to give 150 hours of service to the community,” Shumway said.

“This could be us saying how we celebrate, by giving back 150 hours. We could pick a project and all get together. It may take more than one day, but we could do it.”

Summerville ended the meeting with the revelation city staff found an old city ordinance book and would start each City Council meeting in 2018 by reading an outdated ordinance from the city’s 150-year history.

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