Generations and Generations of the legendary Wyannie Malone attended the Hope Town Heritage Day Festival on Saturday, March 7 along with visitors of near and far. The first known “Heritage Day” took place in 1978 but was called “Abaco Week” instead of “Heritage Day.” The festival took place at Jarrett Park where there was the food stand, baked goods, cold beverages, Museum T-Shirts and the game tables of Hoopla and Pick the Lollipop for the kids.
Heritage Day began with the raising of the Bahamian flag while singing the National Anthem followed by the introduction of board members. The day was filled with excitement as everyone gathered to celebrate. Kids played at the game tables winning prizes and candy while others played on the playground. The Hope Town locals, visitors from the surrounding cays and mainland, and tourists from all over also enjoyed the Heritage of Hope Town.
Numerous Abaco Dinghies floating in the Hope Town Harbour was reminiscent of the past. As in previous Heritage Days, designated scullers took people out for a sculling experience around the harbour like “back in the day;” Harold Malone was in charge of the ‘Learn to Scull’ activity. Boat tours to the Elbow Reef Lighthouse, which recently turned 150 years old and is also the only hand wound lighthouse left in the world, were offered.
Not only were there food and games tables, but also a Live Auction and an Art Show filled with jewelry, handmade crafts and art featuring Hope Town. The Museums committee and volunteers dressed up in their Loyalist costumes for the day as is tradition. If all those activities weren’t enough for some, the museum opened their new exhibit on that Saturday as well: restored photographs taken in 1910 from on top of the Elbow Reef Lighthouse. These are understood to be some of the oldest known photos of Hope Town.
Celebrating the cultural heritage the entire day, those who attended and volunteered were supporting the Wyannie Malone Historical Museum whose mission is “Working to Preserve Hope Town’s Past for the Future.”
If you would like to know more information or simply show your support by becoming a member and unable to visit the museum located in the settlement of Hope Town, the site is hopetownmuseum.com or ‘like’ the Facebook page conveniently named after the Wyannie Malone Historical Museum.