All-day event offers something for everyone
By Deb Alberto
For Hometown News
BREVARD -- Merritt Island is gearing up for its third annual Pioneer Day to be held Feb. 8, and has more events planned than ever before.
The all-day celebration marks the 170th birthday of John Sams, known as the founder of Merritt Island, and a prominent community figure of his time.
A highlight of this year's event includes a cemetery tour for history buffs, interested in learning the stories behind the names on the headstones at St. Lukes Chapel and Cemetery.
"We compiled 20 biographies of some of the early settlers, who are buried in the cemetery and the stories really shed light on the history of Merritt Island," said Joyce Young, the co-chairman of the St. Luke's committee organizing Pioneer Day.
Other events include a Civil War reenactment; a talk by Rosemary McGill, a Brevard resident, who participated in the Freedom Rides at age 17; and a painting demonstration by R.L. Lewis, one of the original Highwaymen, while his son will give a talk about the Highwaymen. Local archeologists and a Tuskegee instructor will also be at the event and ready to answer questions.
Events for evening include a Fish Fry and a folk, blues and bluegrass concert. Tickets are $10 and must be purchased in advance.
For more information about the event, visit the Facebook page www.facebook.com/pioneerdaymerrittisland.