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Friday, October 23, 2020
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Old-Fashioned Barn Raising to Create Mapleton Historic Town Square

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The city ofbrMapleton is holding an old-fashioned barn raising on Sept. 7, creating abrHistoric Town Square at Mapleton City Park for all to enjoy.

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Everyone isbrinvited to take part in this Founder’s Day Celebration. Hammer a nail in thebrbarn door and blacksmith shop, or lay a brick to help reconstruct the 1888brRelief Society Hall. Eat a boxed dinner, bid at the auctions, listen to livebrmusic, enjoy dancing, and shop at the bake sale and old-fashioned bazaar forbrquilts and other handcrafted items.

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The Founder’sbrDay Celebration will be held at 4 p.m. and barn-raising festivities will beginbrat 5 p.m. and finish around 8 p.m.

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In the earlybrdays of the Utah Territory, women created a place of their own by buildingbrRelief Society Meeting Halls. They earned the money for these buildings inbrinventive ways, including holding bazaars and dinners, investing in properties,brgleaning fields, donating “Sunday eggs,” performing dramatic shows, etc. Likebrthe sisters of old, organizers of the event will be earning money to helpbrreconstruct the hall and create the Historic Town Square with a dinner, bakebrsale, auction, and bazaar.

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To honor thebrfortitude and dedication of these women, the Historic Town Square is beingbrcreated to display their handiwork from the past: quilting, knitting,brembroidery, wheat storage, silk making and more.

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“Mybrgrandmothers, Hannah Bird Mendenhall and her mother, Abby Ann Whiting, werebrpart of the first silkworm production in Utah County,” said Mary Fojtek,brPresident of the Mapleton Historical Society. “When Grandmother HannahbrMendenhall served as Kolob Stake Relief Society President she was in charge ofbrthis building which they outgrew in 1922, and the women began meeting in thebrOld White Church.”

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In 1924, thebrproperty was sold to the Jensen family. The hall has been hiding in thebrbackyard of the Dana and Derek Keller family for many years, and they havebrgenerously donated it to the community. Too fragile to move, the hall wasbrdismantled brick by brick, each one cleaned and prepared for repair. Now thebrhistoric building is ready to be reconstructed. The Relief Society ActivitybrHall is one of the two remaining halls out of eleven originals in Utah Valley.brThe other hall is in the Provo Pioneer Park.

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In addition tobrthe Historic Relief Society Hall, old barns have been donated and dismantledbrand will be repurposed to construct a new barn and blacksmith shop. There willbrbe an opportunity for those who attend the celebration to hammer nails in thebrwalls of these newfound historic structures.

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Memorabilia ofbrthe agricultural heritage of Mapleton will be displayed in the new buildings.

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“I firmlybrbelieve the example set by the founders of Mapleton City has provided a legacybrthat is important in any place and in any era,” said Dr. John Frischknecht. “Itbris especially critical for our young people, today and in the future, tobrunderstand the sacrifices and values that have preceded them.”

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For morebrinformation go to JustServe.org or Mapleton.org

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