Tahlequah Daily Press

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June 24, 2014

40th annual Cookson Jubilee already revving up

TAHLEQUAH — With the 39th annual Cookson Jubilee this past weekend, “39 and Holding, Don’t Know Jack,” volunteers with the Tenkiller Area Community Association (TACO) can begin planning for a huge celebration next June.

While they usually do what they can with what they have, the volunteers hope to find ways, and volunteers, to make next year the best Jubilee ever.

In the TACO Community Building, volunteers and friends Pat Highley, Mary Ann Stephen, Annie Williams, Cindy Ballew and Kay Yeager took a few minutes to brain storm on ideas to improve the event for next year’s Cookson Jubilee.

Blake Turner has already committed to bringing music out for next year’s big bash, said Ballew, “so we’ll have music.”

“We tried a homemade ice cream contest in the past, we could try that again,” Ballew said. “Or we could have some kind of dessert contest.”

They thought a food competition might hurt their TACO Food Shack, but were going to explore that option.

Blake Turner said with all the space they could expand children’s activities with a bounce house of ball pit.

“I’d like to see more for the kids to do while their parents relax and enjoy themselves,” said Turner. “Maybe a Slip-n-Slide or sprinklers.”

He plans to explore some big name options for next year.

Mary Ann Stephen, with the Experimental Aircraft Association said they could invite other pilots or an unusual aircraft. She said she’d talk to the club members and see what ideas they had.

“We usually have 40 to 60 airplanes,” said Stephen. “And a lot of people attend the breakfast.”

Stephen liked the idea of inviting the 5Cs Car Club.

TACO Secretary Annie Williams would like to see the event grow in attendance and activities.

“We need more vendors and more crafts,” said Williams.

Vendor coordinator Pat Highley agreed, saying they’ll have to start meeting to plan for next year.

“Changing to June from July has taken some time for some of our usual vendors to change to the new date, others already had this weekend booked,” said Highley. “We’ll start earlier to contact vendors for next year.”

The group has four decades of history to draw on and will be highlighting some of that.

Other ideas tossed around included expanding the Miss Tenkiller contest, inviting artists to show inside the TACO Community Building, and have face-painting and more for kids to do. They also will consider ways to improve their advertising. The organization is open to ideas and volunteers to make next year’s anniversary the best yet.

To volunteer, contact tacocookson@gmail.com, or call Cindy Ballew at 918-931-7811.

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