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Lawrence County Raises Bicentennial Flag
Updated January 9, 2018 12:59 PM
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(BEDFORD) - The 200th birthday of Lawrence County kicked off Tuesday morning with a celebration inside the courthouse and the raising of the Lawrence County Bicentennial Flag.

Lawrence County Commissioners Gene McCracken and Dustin Gabhart were joined by former Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman and City of Bedford Director of Business and Community Development Director Marla Jones and retiring Lawrence County Superior Court I Judge Michael Robbins, County Auditor Jody Edwards and Shawswick Trustee Millard Jones and musical group Scarlet2White for the celebration along with a number of Lawrence County residents. Commissioner Rodney Fish was ill and could not attend the event.

Becky Skillman shared the Lawrence County Bicentennial Committee's effort has been built on four Key Pillars: Nature Preservation, Youth and Education, Community Involvement and Historical Celebration.

"We want all Lawrence Countians to be involved to showcase all that makes Lawrence County great," Skillman added

The Lawrence County Bicentennial Committee has made itself an example for others in the state in the way that it is organized. By focusing its efforts around the Key Pillars Lawrence County ensures that Legacy Projects and other events celebrating the Bicentennial coincide with the goal of the Commission

The Bicentennial flag of gold and featuring the navy blue and gold Lawrence County Bicentennial logo was raised by members of American Legion Gillen Post #33 Color Guard. Smaller flags are available for purchase for $50.

Lawrence County, came into existence on Jan. 7, 1818, by an act of the Indiana General Assembly. The commissioners today signed a proclamation declaring Jan. 9, 2018 as Lawrence County Day. The county was formed out of land that had previously been Orange County.

The celebration will continue throughout the year. One signature event of the Lawrence County Bicentennial celebration will be the Bicentennial Torch Relay which will take place in the fall. The Lawrence County Bicentennial Commission is accepting torchbearer nominations until Jan. 31. Torchbearer nominations will recognize Lawrence Countians who have demonstrated exceptional public service, excellence in their professions, acts of heroism or volunteer service to their neighborhoods, communities, region or state.

The Lawrence County Bicentennial Torch Relay will be patterned after the Olympic Torch Relay and Indiana Department of Tourism's Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay. The Bicentennial torch will pass through all nine Lawrence County townships, and the route will be designed to unite Lawrence County citizens and communities during the bicentennial celebration year.

The Lawrence County Running Club is working with Lawrence County Tourism, the Bicentennial Commission and law enforcement officials to finalize the route. The relay will showcase locations of natural beauty, local interest and historic significance in the county.

Torchbearer nomination forms are available at five locations: Lawrence County Auditors Office, Lawrence County Tourism Office, Bedford City Hall, Mitchell City Hall and Oolitic Town Hall. Turn in forms at those locations, send them via e-mail to or by mail to Lawrence County Bicentennial Torchbearer, 405 I St., Bedford, IN 47421. An online nomination form is on the Lawrence County Bicentennial Facebook page.

Once all nomination forms are collected, a juried nomination process will be employed to select torchbearers. A Torchbearer Nomination committee has been formed to manage this process. Nominees must be current or former residents of Lawrence County or be nominated in honor of a current or former resident. Individuals may be nominated posthumously and the name of a substitute torchbearer may be submitted to carry the torch or behalf of the nominee.

Nominees must be at least 10 years of age, and torchbearers younger than 18 will need to meet other youth torchbearer requirements. A nominee must possess the physical adaptive ability to carry the torch a minimum of a quarter-mile. Accommodations will be made for those torchbearers with disabilities.

To find out more information, visit the Bicentennial Facebook page at:

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