By Kaitlin Bedell
The Old Home Day Committee held their first meeting on May 6 to begin the planning process for the five-day event which will take place in the third week of August.
The Committee has faced a year of uncertainty following the retirement of committee leaders as well as the cancellation of last years’ events due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Londonderry volunteers came together during the meeting to help rebuild the committee and begin piecing together the town’s annual celebration activities.
“A couple things the staff has talked about in us not having an Old Home Day last year in some ways is it gives us the chance to hit the reset button a little bit on big things we want to tweak,” Kevin Smith said.
The Committee discussed the possibility of changing around the schedule of the events throughout the week to maximize their resources.
One idea the committee is taking into consideration is eliminating the “Kid’s night” dedicated to carnival-like activities and instead incorporating those events on the day of the parade.
“That way it makes the weekend more manageable, especially since we’ve gotten into this position where our former chair-person isn’t doing it this year,” Smith said. “Our staff is really taking on a lot of the role of leading the chair and organizing the multi-day event.”
Since the committee is considering having the “Kids night” events on a different day, they are exploring different options for an activity that they can fill the Thursday night it is typically held on with.
The members talked about the possibility of doing things like cornhole tournaments and trolly tours or even a “taste of the town” event on that evening.
Most of the meeting acted as a brainstorming session for the volunteers to discuss activity ideas as well as contacts that they could reach out to in order to help with the organizing process.
Due to the rebuilding the committee has to do, they are in need of as many volunteers as they can get during the weeks’ events as well as throughout the planning stages.
Volunteer Katie Sullivan asked Smith what her and the other volunteers’ roles were at the meeting.
Members within the room chuckled and Smith said, “So right now we’re the 2021 Old Home Day Committee.”
One volunteer said that there are about six more volunteers that she knows of who would like to help out but were unable to attend the meeting.
“So we really need to start meeting to iron out who wants what and then find people to fill in what we need for positions,” Sullivan said.
Smith also said that the committee needs to start “plugging people in to the various positions that we need.”
The committee discussed several different names of people they want to reach out to about getting involved with the committee and will continue to look for more volunteers.
Sullivan said that the volunteers will have to start meeting more regularly in the coming weeks as they continue to rebuild the committee and plan events.
Currently the only official board member listed on the Old Home Day Committee website is Town Council Liaison John Farrell.