Vero Beach hosts 90th birthday party Friday

VERO BEACH — The City of Vero Beach is celebrating its 90th birthday with an anniversary party on Friday, Oct. 16 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. along 14th Avenue in Historic Downtown Vero Beach.

City Clerk Tammy Vock, chairwoman of the celebration committee, said the city has managed to put on the event in a lean budget year using staff time on planning and coordination, but with sponsors picking up the rest of the tab. Vock said the committee has already collected about $30,000 through sponsorships.

The volunteer committee has been working for months on finding ways to both celebrate the milestone and have the event leave a lasting, positive effect on the city’s offering of programs for children. The committee has purchased t-shirts that will be sold for $10 each to raise money for the city’s parks and recreation department.

Throughout the grounds of the Heritage Center as well as inside, party-goers can visit a myriad of informational booths, find food, beer and wine and buy commemorative T-shirts and Anniversary posters displaying the official event logo, designed by local artist Stacy Elkey. Proceeds from the sale of the posters will help keep the Royal Palm Pointe fountains open and splashing.

Ekey’s talent has been popping up all over Vero Beach; on the cover of the 2009 Cultural Council Event Planner, a colorful TurtleTrax turtle for the Mental Health Association, one of six banners hanging throughout downtown for the Main Street Vero Beach organization, T-shirts and yearbook covers for Rosewood Magnet School and currently she has a mural in progress on the exterior wall of 14th Avenue’s Beach Bum Bagel.

“Each piece of my art tells a story of a person, a feeling or a moment captured freehand with watercolor and pen. Creativity has always come very naturally to me. I am in love with the fact that art itself can freeze moments for lifetimes to be shared with others for generations.”

Ekey conceived the idea of using oranges as the highlight of her logo art as she sees citrus as the common link within the community of Vero Beach.

According to Ekey, “Citrus was a natural to intertwine in my art and it took approximately eighteen hours to complete. The City will be using the art in all their event advertising and promotional materials. I was thrilled to be asked to participate and it is my contribution to the City of Vero Beach.”

The last birthday the city celebrated was its 75th and included activities throughout the year. Vock said that this year’s birthday bash would have more food vendors along with areas set up with history books and historic photos of Vero Beach.

“That’s going to be awesome,” Vock said.

IF YOU GO –

All events take place in and around the The Heritage Center on 14th Avenue in Historic Downtown Vero Beach.

5:30 p.m. – Mayor Sabin Abell and City Council members will make welcome remarks and introduce representatives of Pioneer families.6:15 p.m. – Cake cutting and entertainment by Vero Beach resident Alexi Prieto singing “Colors of the Wind” and “Magic.”6:30 p.m. – The big band sounds of the David Letts Band on the Heritage Center Stage6:30 p.m. – Vero Beach Recreation Department Gymnastic Team on the front lawn7 p.m. – Guild on the Go, the traveling troupe of the Vero Beach Theatre Guild on the Heritage Center Stage7:30 p.m. – Old Barber Bridge will perform on 14th Avenue in front of the Courthouse Executive Center from7:30 p.m. – Stringsations Quartet will play from 5:30-8:30 p.m. inside the Center.8 p.m. – Jerry Chambers and the Party Dolls playing golden oldies

Ongoing events:

Slideshow by the Vero Beach Power Squadron inside the Heritage Center, produced by Daniel Thomas, Ed.D., Education Officer for Vero Beach Power Squadron and Fleet Captain of the Vero Beach Yacht Club. Thirty minutes of historic scenes from 1919, before the city became Vero Beach, its rapid growth in the 1930s and the 1950s when Vero Beach became known for “Sun, Sand and Lots of Fun,” through to the present time.

Rene the Face Painter inside the Pocahontas Park playground

Free dancing inside the Vero Beach Community Center

The Train Depot, home to the Indian River County Historical Society will be open all evening showing exhibits of model railroad and trains, indian huts, railroad memorabilia, historic books, maps and photographs.

Storytellers and Richard Votapka as Nelson Fell doing a historic presentation and playing the banjo.

Classic Cars – while walking up and down 14th Avenue, you will discover over 20 authentic automobiles from every decade courtesy of the members of the Antique Automobile Club of America.

The City extends its thanks to the sponsors of the evening including Riverside Bank, Perfection Paint & Body Work, Hale Groves, Mulligan’s, 93.7 The Breeze, Christian FM, TV 10, the Indian River Genealogical Society, The Press Journal, The Vero Beach Yacht Club, Cox-Gifford-Seawinds Funeral Home/Crematory/Seawinds Funeral Home/Crematory, Indian River County Historical Society, Everything Outdoors and the Vero Beach Power Squadron.

For more information, call Tammy Vock at (772) 978-4700.

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