OHIO VALLEY — The Point Pleasant River Museum and Learning Center is getting ready for its first fundraiser of the year – “Shanty Boat Night” which will include dinner and entertainment. This is all an effort to preserve the area’s rich, river history.
Each year the museum hosts a dinner with entertainment and giveaways for attendees, and the staff is excited for this one.
The entertainment is the Gary Stewart Quintet, a musical group from the tri-state area that was formed in 1971. They play a variety of music, and have played in a number of well known venues. Stewart is a former band director of Point Pleasant High School and currently teaches at the University of Rio Grande.
The prizes that will be given away will include the following: Tickets to Kings island, Tecumseh Outdoor Drama, Snowshoe State Park, the Creation Museum, Kentucky Derby Museum, and others. Other prizes to be given away will include merchandise form Elderbeerman, Cracker Barrel, the West Virginia Lottery, and many more.
“We hope everyone will come. We always have a good time, the food is great, and the prizes are well worth it” said Jack Fowler, director on the river museum.
The dinner will be May 19 at 6:30 p.m. at the First Church of God Ministry Center on Jefferson boulevard. Tickets are $40 for adults and $15 for children under 18 years of age; they must be purchased in advance at the museum.
The dinner grew from a fundraiser designed as a shanty boat display that was in the museum. A shanty boat is a water fairing vessel in which the occupants live; a modern term would likely be house boat. Families that lived in shanty boats would often float down river from town to town, trading work for food or goods, and often pick from gardens along the banks.
“It was a common rule that the first few rows of a garden was saved for people on Shanty boats” said Fowler.
He also explained that shanty boat culture was most popular in the depression era in the early twentieth century.
“It was a unique, and very interesting part of history,” he said.
Reach Morgan McKinniss at 740-446-2342 ext 2108 or firstname.lastname@example.org