2016-10-13 / Life in Leelanau

Donations, sales up at Empire Heritage Day


VOLUNTEERS TRISH Rogers and Jill Cheney (from left) demonstrated how to make butter in the kitchen at the Empire Area Heritage Museum Saturday. VOLUNTEERS TRISH Rogers and Jill Cheney (from left) demonstrated how to make butter in the kitchen at the Empire Area Heritage Museum Saturday. Empire was the place to go back in time Saturday at the annual Heritage Day at the Empire Area Heritage Museum.

Dave Taghon, president of the Empire Area Heritage Group, said it’s impossible to get a count on turnout. But donations and sales at the gift shop would indicate turnout was good.

“Donations were good and we had our best sales day ever,” Taghon said. “There’s no way of knowing how many were here because not everyone signed in ... but it was a nice turnout.”

Northport fiddler Ruby John and guitarist Rollo Gleason of Ovid made repeat appearances for musical entertainment.

New this year was the Dodworth Duo, featuring soprano Elizabeth Mitchell and tenor Ted Badgerow, who performed songs from the 1836- 1895 era.


THE DODWORTH Duo featured (from left) Ted Badgerow, tenor and Elizabeth Mitchell, soprano, performing in period garb. THE DODWORTH Duo featured (from left) Ted Badgerow, tenor and Elizabeth Mitchell, soprano, performing in period garb. Saturday’s celebration also included demonstrations in making apple cider, ice cream, butter, pumpkin butter, maple sugar candy and sauerkraut using turn-of-the-century methods.

Several vintage tractors, cars and bicycles were also on display through the museum grounds.

“Ken Purdy from Shelby brings his vintage garden tractors every year,” Taghon said. “It’s a long distance for him to come, but he always comes back.”

Lance Roman of Empire won a hand-stitched quilt fashioned by the Empire quilters.

Heritage Day marks the end of another season at the museum, which is funded by donations and run entirely by volunteers.

“We’ve enjoyed so much support,” said Taghon, recalling a museum visit last month from a man who came from Torch Lake. “A week later, we got a check in the mail for $200 and he was here Saturday with a friend.

“That’s the stuff that keeps us going.”

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