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Evans, Spruill receive tribute

August 12, 2012

By MATT CRANE
sdnlife@bellsouth.net

Community members hoping to get a seat at the Okitbbeha County Heritage Museum’s fundraiser, “Denim and Diamonds,” have until Monday to claim their ticket for the western-themed affair.

“Denim and Diamonds” begins Friday at 7 p.m. at the Shrine Club featuring a barbecue dinner, live entertainment, a silent auction and door prizes. Tickets are $35 per person and can be purchased at Thyme, the Downtown Book Mart and Cafe, the Heritage Museum and from Friends of the Museum board members until Monday.

The western theme calls for all participants to dress up in their best denim and cowboy attire while the ladies will provide the “diamonds” portion of the event by wearing their very best, real or fake, bling.
One of the evening’s main events will be the presentation of the “Legends: Past and Present” tribute.

Fundraising co-chair and FOM President, Wanda Thorne, said the tribute came about from planning “Denim and Diamonds” as an annual event.
“We wanted to initiate the practice of selecting someone alive and someone deceased who have a connection to the museum through their exhibits there,” Thorne said. “This year we are honoring George Evans and Lynn Spruill.”

Thorne said Spruill has donated Navy and Delta Airlines uniforms and mementos for exhibits at the museum and is thankful for the monetary support for the museum’s rain garden.

“She broke many glass ceilings with her flight career and her public service career,” she said. “She is a role model for young women.”
Thorne said Evans’ family donated signs, shoe rests and a cigarette machine as a part of the museum’s Evans Shine Parlor exhibit.

“George and his two sons have been important black men in our community and have been inspirations to all,” she said. “George and his family founded Boy Scout Troop 100, an all-black troop, back in the 1940s…he was a scoutmaster and later his sons were.”

Thorne said the idea for the tribute was an effort to enlighten guest about the museum through displays at the benefit.

“We’ll have a display for Lynn, George and one about the museum and the rain garden/pavilion,” she said. “We’ll honor Lynn and the Evans family during the fundraiser.”

Thorne said guests will step through saloon doors as they enter the building, providing a great western ambience for the evening.

“We’re using denim and bandanas as table decorations, with faux diamonds added in,” she said. “Ladies will have the opportunity to purchase faux bling and we’re offering some fantastic times for a silent auction.”

Thorne said the event will help the museum and its members finish ongoing renovations and special projects, including an outdoor pavilion.
“The Friends has spent more than $10,000 this summer,” she said. “Because the Friends of the Museum is a nonprofit organization, all donations are tax deductible.”

“Denim and Diamonds” begins Friday at 7 p.m. at the Shrine Club featuring a barbecue dinner, live entertainment, a silent auction and door prizes. Tickets are $35 per person and can be purchased at Thyme, the Downtown Book Mart and Cafe, the Heritage Museum and from Friends of the Museum board members until Monday.

For more information, call 662-323-0211 or 662-323-6867 or email wandathorne43@gmail.com.

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