Begun in 1972 and first known as the Northfield Bicentennial Committee, their mission was to help the city recognize our country’s 200th anniversary. Today the Committee continues to recognize Northfield residents and their history through ongoing maintenance and improvement of the Northfield’s Museum, the city’s annual July 4th parade, and the annual summer concert series at the Bandstand in Birch Grove Park.
The first July 4th parade was held in 1975. Tradition honors the “Citizen of the Year,” the “Year’s First Baby” (born to Northfield parents), and “Miss July 4th”. Some citizens honored have been: Augusta Bruyns, Dr. Peter Marvel, Charles M Kresge, and Mac Kreutz,
In 1975 the committee reclaimed the old city library (1938-1969) from the municipal yard and placed it behind city hall with the intent of turning it into a City Museum. Prior to becoming the City’s library, the building had a history of several different uses including a company office and then a meeting house for a small social group of women known as “The Sunshine Club.” City Hall became the new home of the Northfield Library in 1969. The Northfield Bicentennial Museum opened in 1976.
In 1985 the museum was moved to Birch Grove Park. In 1996 the Casto House (ca 1830) was donated to the museum by the Doerr family (Charles and children, Pat and John). It reopened in 2000 with a foyer joining library and Casto House, and a new name. Roy W. Clark is the curator of the “Northfield Museum and Casto House.” CLICK HERE for more information.
Museum collections include: “Evelyn Ryon Collins Obituary Collection;” Mill Road School class pictures from 1895; Mill Road School memorabilia, band uniforms and instruments. Year 2000 city-wide photos taken by 25 volunteers, and much more. The newest addition to the museum complex is Bob Webb’s Shed. Bob has contributed his wonderful collection of model airplanes and ships that it took him years to make. It is worth seeing
The museum is collecting family group photos. If you have a photo that includes your family of Northfield parents and grandparents, please let us copy it for our collection.
The Northfield Bandstand was built by Jack English of Northfield with city funds provided to the committee. On July 4, 1976, Larry Ferrari, well known Philadelphia organist, played the first concert in the bandstand in Birch Grove Park. Concerts are held there during the summer months.
The bandstand is available for weddings and some other events. For information on how to reserve the bandstand, or if you are interested in becoming a member of the Cultural Committee, you may contact the group by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cultural Committee Members are appointed yearly by City Council and volunteers are always welcome.
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