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Pontiac Carnival Days

P.R.O.U.D. Presents Carnival Days in Downtown Pontiac opened Friday, with event organizers trying out the super slide. P.R.O.UD. is the acronym for Pontiac Redeveloping Our United Downtown. From left, volunteers Jon Sear and his 7 year-old daughter Natalie Sear, Lisa Roberts, (front) and Lori Fairfield, P.R.O.U.D executive director. The event continues today (Saturday) from 12p.m. to 11p.m. and Sunday from 12p.m. to 5p.m.. Online information can be found at www.pontiacproud.org. (The Pantagraph/STEVE SMEDLEY)

PONTIAC -- Several decisions still have to be made about how the City of Pontiac will celebrate its 175th anniversary this summer.

One decision, though, seems fairly set.

When referring to the celebration, you won't see any Latin-derived numerical names (dodransbicentennial, demisemiseptcentennial, septaquintaquinquecentennial) that refer to 175 years.

"We don't have enough room on our letterheads for all of that," said City Administrator Bob Karls. "So, we will just use 175th."

Tourism director Ellie Alexander said a committee of about 20 people has met regularly to discuss plans. Many of the activities will be scheduled for July 27 and 28.

"We are looking at a series of events scattered across the entire city," Alexander said. "We are tossing a lot of good ideas around and will probably begin finalizing them soon."

Events for the entire family will be stressed, she said. A movie night in the park with hot dogs, chips and popcorn is on the horizon, and the city's museums and Pontiac Public Library are expected to participate.

On June 29 and 30, the Pre-War Festival will focus on culture and transportation prior to 1942. "We expect to have motorcycles, bicycles, and try to do as much as we can the way it was done prior to 1942," she said.

Another theme, Alexander said, will be education about Pontiac's journey since 1837.

"The 175th anniversary is quite significant," Karls said. "We are grateful to the committee for their hard work and know that this will be an exciting summer around Pontiac."

Hudson, Mount Pulaski, LeRoy and Clinton all have marked 175 years since 2010.

Last year, Hudson held a parade and a daylong celebration during the July 4 weekend. Mount Pulaski's Founders Day Festival offered tours of the city's courthouse, a state historic site, a parade and flea market. In 2010, LeRoy used the July 4 holiday to celebrate its anniversary with a parade, follies program, all-school reunion and fireworks.

In June 2010, Clinton hosted a vintage baseball game, ice cream social, craft fair, Abraham Lincoln look-alike contests and an organized bike ride.

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