Need plans for New Year’s Eve?
A fundraiser to help pay the outstanding expenses associated with saving the Birthing Tree will ring in the new year with a bang.
“McMinnville Heritage Preservation has hired the South Jackson Street Band to play at a fundraiser for the Birthing Tree,” said Dr. Neil Schultz, president of the organization. “They offer a big-band sound that’s really impressive. It’s going to be a wonderful evening.”
The event will be held at McMinnville Country Club on Dec. 31 from 8 p.m. to midnight. South Jackson Street Band offers as many as 19 performers offering jazz, swing, and patriotic songs.
The proceeds of the event will go to pay for stabilization of the Birthing Tree after storms in 2010 caused damage to two limbs. Specialists were called in to properly remove what was left of the broken limbs and stabilize the rest of the tree’s limbs with cables.
“A lot of people don’t realize that we still owe $6,000,” said Schultz. “We borrowed the money to pay for the work. It cost $7,900, which was a reduced rate. We received some donations, but not much.”
The group had hoped to work with a local craftsman and use the wood salvaged from the broken limbs to make items, such as walking sticks and bowls, to be sold as a fundraiser. Schultz says that did not happen, but this fundraiser will be used to draw attention back to the tree’s importance.
“We are hoping this fundraiser will get interest back in the efforts used to save the tree,” Schultz said. “When the experts were here, they said while we thought the tree was about 200 years old, it could be much older than that. Maybe 300 to 400 years old. It’s a valuable piece of Warren County history that needs to be protected.”
Dinner will be available but not included in the price to attend. Dinner reservations can be made by calling McMinnville Country Club at 668-4141. A cash bar will be available.
For those not wanting to attend the event, donations are being accepted. Make checks payable to Birthing Tree Fund and mail them to Neil Schultz, P.O. Box 232, McMinnville, Tenn., 37111.
Tickets for the event are $25 per couple, which is tax deductible, and can be obtained by calling Schultz at 668-3573 or Rachel Killebrew at 473-8616.