The Old Tate Gym and other areas in Tate will be a bustle of activity this weekend for Tate Days.
From a really big hole in the ground to big bags full of vendor merchandise, the Tate Day Festival promises a big day of festival fun for attendees. Surely, a highlight of the day will be a tour of the renown Tate open-pit quarries. For the fourth year Polycor Georgia Marble has allowed public viewing of this awe-inspiring site on Tate Day. The story of Tate marble - how it originated, how and when it was discovered, its multiple uses (both monumental and others), how its mining has changed over time, how long it will last at this location, and other information is one big story. The on-site portion of the tour is conducted by Mr.
Kenneth Kincaid, a long-time employee of Georgia Marble Company. His explanations and willingness to answer questions about company operations and products enhance the day for all who visit.
Tour tickets can be purchased from a booth located at the corner of South Station Street and Hwy. 53. The cost is $5.
Regarding the bag of merchandise, Penny Davis chairing the Arts & Crafts exhibits has lined up more than 30 vendors presenting a variety of quality offerings. Those vendors are located in and around the restored Tate Depot. Visitors are encouraged to look at them all; likely they will find something that appeals.
Wishing to share with Tate Day visitors the rich church related/ influence of the region’s many places of worship, Marble Valley Friends presents a short overview of the history and ministry of local churches in chronological order of their beginnings. Selected to participate are churches that have ministered to families sending students to Tate School. The 2018 Church Spotlight will focus on Long Swamp Baptist Church of Christ. Historical data for the presentation were gathered by Patsy Fields Daniels; several generations of the Fields family have been closely involved with this influential worship center. Patsy’s son-in-law, Bill Cagle, will make the oral presentation. Concluding the event, Patsy and her sister helen Pharr will sing “When the Wagon was New.” Concerning the song, Mrs. Daniels says “Helen and I have sung this song since before we were teenagers.” The words of the song brings good memories to this writer who shared similar experiences while working on grandparents’ farm in south Georgia in the 1940s. Perhaps other listeners will have their own memories or will enjoy hearing a musical rendition of churchgoing in another era. The Church Spotlight event will be held at the downtown stage beginning at 11 a.m. Marble Valley Friends is indebted to the Fields/ Daniels/ Pharr/ Cagle families for their contributions to this Tate Day celebration.
Also at the downtown stage area, Michael Morris has organized musical entertainment from 10:30 a.m. until mid-afternoon. Who will be on stage often changes as the day progresses. It is a good plan to stop by periodically, or to grab a chair and stay so as not to miss anything.
You say that somewhere in here you are getting hungry? If arrangements have not been made previously to have lunch at the Old Tate Gym, there is no reason to remain hungry. Mimi’s at the old Tate Drug Store can furnish diners with an assortment of eats and treats. The Bell family there makes dining a pleasure. Or stop by to visit Don and the crew at the Quick Burger. Tasty sandwiches or full plate meals are available. At the four-way stop, if Jennifer at the Tate Meat Market does not have a food-serving vendor outside, she surely has an excellent selection of in-house meats for at home preparation. Yes, visitors can eat, and eat very well.
While in Tate, festival-goers are invited to say hello to the Bell family at the soon-to-be open Bell Family Pharmacy, to Lindsey Hannah and staff at the 53 Market where one may find just the decorative item needed. Need to fill that gas tank? Stop with Robert Willingham at the corner service station; in case an emergency arises, Bill Weaver at the auto service center next to the service station is available. Perhaps there is no need for a beauty salon appointment on Tate Day, but Beverly Townsend at Tate Style Shop is ready to provide that when needed. Stop in and say hello to her.
Marble Valley Friends hopes each visitor enjoys the day in Tate - that most historic and memorable place. Before leaving, visitors are invited to drive through the historic village, look through the local cemeteries, walk through the nation’s only marble schoolhouse, visit the Old Tate Gym and the Tate Depot, drive by the pink marble mansion (the Tate House) and take time to speak with the friendly “Taters.” Above all, begin planning to spend the first Saturday of November in historic Tate.