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Durham plans a big day and a big celebration


Old-fashioned togetherness will be the big attraction in October when Durham Township residents will gather to celebrate Durham Day – and they’ll also be asked to sign up to volunteer at the Durham Grist Mill.

But, this year, the event will be the “big, old family picnic” so popular years ago, according to Dani McClanahan, township administrator, who made the announcement at the board of supervisors July meeting.

For the past 50 years or so, Durham did what other townships were doing and staged a small outdoor fair with a band and food and craft vendors on the Village Green.

Attendance had been dwindling and last year the township combined picnic and fair. But, McClanahan said, residents had told her this year they would prefer a picnic with family bringing their own dishes, covered or not.

The afternoon picnic, scheduled for Oct. 12, will also be the perfect opportunity for residents to learn about volunteer service at the mill.

The Durham Historical Society will be marking the 200th anniversary of the iconic mill, the centerpiece of Durham Village, next year, and hopes to get the mill ready for that.

According to McClanahan, the supervisors and members of the historic society will draw up a list of chores to be done at the mill and residents can sign up to do them. Both Skilled and unskilled labor are needed, the administrator said.

In other business, the supervisors decided to reject one bid submitted for road repair and another for the planned resurfacing of another road and have them rebid.

This is just one setback in the ongoing struggle to get the proper work done to repair a road damaged last year after two intense storms with heavy downpours washed out section of Dogwood Lane and Stouts Valley Road.

The first bid, rejected twice before, reflected a change in the work to be done and the materials and the supervisors thought it was too high.

They decided to buy the material directly from a cooperative municipal service and rebid the labor portion. The same reasoning applied to the re-surfacing project on Old Furnace Road.

The supervisors accepted a third bid for the repair of storm-damaged Stouts Valley Road. In both instances of storm repair, the township road crew completed the repairs they are equipped to do in an effort to save money and offer the rest of the work to outside contractors.