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Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration
September 8th, 2007
Starr-Gennett Foundation

Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration
Gennett Walk of Fame LogoThe Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration presented by the Starr-Gennett Foundation and the City of Richmond Parks and Recreation Department embodies the collaboration of several organizations to create a high-quality event that is worthy of the momentous unveiling of the Gennett Walk of Fame.

The Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration will be the first large-scale event honoring the Starr-Gennett legacy at the site of the Starr Piano Company and Gennett Records Studio, which has been undergoing considerable improvements by the City. To date, the City of Richmond has spent close to 5 million dollars on improvements to the area, which emphasizes community support for the Foundation’s mission.

The 2007 Celebration features a special collaboration with Earlham College for the Family Fun portion of the day’s events.

Music Ride on the Cardinal Greenway Trail  8:00 a.m.
The Wayne County Cardinal Greenway Recreation Trail organization will start the day’s festivities with the annual Richmond Rail Ride, starting at the Starr-Gennett Historic Site in the Gorge Park and continuing on the Whitewater Gorge Trail and Cardinal Greenway.

The Cardinal Greenway rides are:

  • 8:30 am – 50 miles,
  • 9:00 am – 25 miles,
  • 9:30 am – 5 miles
  • and a Family Walk/Wagon/Ride at 10:00 am.

Registration opens at 8:00 am at the South 1st Street Entrance by the Main Street Bridge. (Registration Form - pdf format)

Gennett Records Walk of Fame Inaugural
The Gennett music concerts will be free to the public and no admission will be charged to see the Walk of Fame or participate in Family Fun activities. Guests will include residents of the City/Wayne County and surrounding region as well as travelers to the city from across the nation, including Foundation members and the Gennett family.

Rooftop Rendezvous Kick-off
Friday evening September 7, Main Street will kick-off the Festival week-end with the annual Roof Top Rendezvous.

Hoagy Carmichael Statue and Educational Exhibit
Support from the Tourism Bureau, Eastern Indiana Chapter of the IU Alumni Association and Foundation, and Wayne County Foundation will bring to Richmond a full-size bronze sculpture of Hoagy Carmichael at the piano for display in the Starr-Gennett Logo Pavilion.

The educational exhibit that accompanies the statue interprets the Hoagy legacy. Members of the Hoagy Carmichael family have indicated they have planned to attend the Walk of Fame Celebration in Richmond and that Randy Carmichael will perform.

PUBLIC WELCOME! The full size Hoagy sculpture and Educational Exhibit will be in the lobby of the Leland Thursday, September 6 from 9 am until 8 pm and open to visitors and again on Friday morning on September 7. Call the Leland before you go to see the sculpture Friday afternoon, however; it is to be moved to the Gorge Park for the Walk of Fame.

The Leland is the site of the V.I.P. reception at 11:30 sponsored by the Wayne County Tourism and Convention Center.

Family Fun  11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
The actual Celebration will begin at 11:00 am with family activities presented by the City of Richmond’s Parks Department and Earlham College. Parks staff will set-up and run two “blow up” games for children including a 40-foot dual slide and a 32-foot obstacle course. Other activities will include miniature golf, face painting, balloon art, jugglers, a music-themed chalk drawing contest, and more. Mr. Jingles, balloon artist, will perform.

Food Vendors 11:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Throughout the entire day, local non-profit organizations and local restaurants will offer refreshments and meals for Celebration attendees.

Mini-Concerts – Music 11:00 a.m. - 1:45 p.m.
Live music during the family activities will feature local talent. The Earlham Jazz Combo will open the day’s music offerings at 11:00 as the Hoagy Carmichael statue is unveiled. At 11:40, the Earlham Hand Drum Ensemble will shake the rafters with its powerful music. Randy Carmichael will perform at the VIP Donors reception at the Leland and perform in the Starr-Gennett Pavilion also: 1:30 Randy Carmichael .

  • 11:00 a.m. The Earlham Jazz Combo
  • 11:00 a.m. Unveiling of the Hoagy Carmichael Statue
  • 11:40 a.m. Earlham Hand Drum Ensemble
  • 12:45 p.m. Singing Hoosiers from IU, Directed by Dr. Michael Swartzkopf
  •  1:30 p.m.  Randy Carmichael

Walk of Fame Induction and Ceremony 2:00 p.m.
The Walk of Fame nominees selected by the Foundation’s National Advisory Board will be inducted during an hour-long ceremony beginning at 2:00 pm.

Members of the National Advisory Board, family members of the Walk of Fame nominees, and local residents who once worked at the Starr Piano Company or who recorded for Gennett Records have already been invited to officiate at the ceremony.

The induction ceremony will include introductions of those who are officiating, brief presentations regarding the nominees and their importance in music history, samples of the nominees’ recordings for Gennett, an abbreviated background of the project and larger Starr-Gennett legacy, and most importantly, the official unveiling and ribbon cutting to open the Gennett Walk of Fame.

Special Musicians in Concert  3:00 p.m.  - 8:00 p.m.
Following the ceremony, the Starr-Gennett Foundation will present three musical acts:

The goals for the concert portion of the Celebration are to introduce audience members to a sample of the historic styles of American music that were recorded in Richmond’s Gennett studios and to celebrate the manner in which Gennett contributed to the development and spread of these styles.

The music performances will start at 3:00 pm and continue until 8:00 pm. All performances will occur in one of the last-remaining Starr Piano factory buildings. The building has been rehabilitated from near-devastation to an open-air pavilion that is the perfect location for a late-summer concert. The Parks and Recreation Department advises that concert attendees bring lawn chairs to truly enjoy the concerts in the pavilion for the Celebration.

The Starr Piano site does not provide ample parking, although parking is available for guests who will require handicapped-accessible parking. Visitors are asked to use the sizeable county parking lot located two blocks from the Starr site.

Price is right – no cost for admission in the Gorge Park!
The Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration will not only be a fitting occasion for the unveiling of the Walk of Fame but will also entertain attendees and educate them about the importance of the Starr-Gennett legacy and Richmond’s musical past, at the very location where the story began.

Gennett Walk of Fame Festival Volunteers and Leaders:
  • Starr-Gennett Walk of Fame Celebration Co-Chairpersons:
    • Karen Chasteen 983-7230
    • Dr. Karen Montgomery 962-5419
  • Parks and Recreation:
    • Sonia Brock, Superintendent 983-7275 Gorge Park, Starr-Gennett Historic site
    • Jim Dykes, Asst Superintendent: Drinks concessions, blow ups
    • Mike Parker: Starr-Gennett Historic Site Manager
  • Wayne County Convention & Tourism Bureau
    • Jim Resh VIP Reception at the Leland, Trolley, Hoagy Statue 935-8687
  • Cardinal Greenway Bike and Walk events:
    • Connie Anderson, First Bank 973-4280
  • Starr-Gennett Foundation (thru 7-31)
    • Beth Surles, 966-1521 and on 9-8 Artistic Manager, professional musicians 3-8 pm
  • Earlham College Collaboration:
    • Avis Stewart
  • RSVP:
    • Maxine Chenowith 962-6707 Hospitality Team/Parking
  • Gallery in the Gorge
    • Ron Hughes, SG Foundation board, Foundation Members
  • Food Vendors:
    • Mark Cordell 967-3958
  • National Advisory Board and Induction Ceremony:
    • Dr. David Fulton 855-5887
  • Starr-Gennett Foundation:
    • President – Al Gentry 966-7259
  • Roof Top Rendezvous:
    • Main Street, Beth Fields 962-8151
    For more information, see the Starr-Gennett web site at: www.starrgennett.org
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