Rooster Day deemed a big success

Published 9:06 am Wednesday, May 24, 2017

All indications are the second annual Rooster Day in Demopolis can be called a success.

While final figures still aren’t in, Marengo County Historical Society curator Kirk Brooker anticipates the net profit will be at or above the 2016 inaugural event.

That means work can be stepped up to make needed repairs on the two historic homes owned by MCHS, Bluff Hall and Lyon Hall.

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“These funds go directly into a project,” Brooker said.

He listed plans for Bluff Hall include repairing and replacing rotted wood on south side porch and trim work on the front of the building as well as repairing the back doors and areas of ceiling and decking on first and second floor of north gallery.

At Lyon Hall, the Rooster Day funding will go toward repairing and replacing the sidewalk and front steps hand rail,  continuing shutter work, repairing the nursery and painting the south and west sides.

Brooker said the Silent Auction raised $4,686; Live Auction, $10,540; Coop Games, $1,660, and Bake Sale, $422.

The chairman of Rooster Day for the past two years, Lisa Compton, added that the number of Rooster Boosters jumped in the second year, showing community support is growing for the new event. Booster support was up by $3,500 and came from 61 cash boosters, compared to 35 the first year.

The one disappointment was the Cock’s Crow 5K race. Compton said participation was down 27 percent.

“This is one of the places all of the scheduling conflicts hurt us,” she said. Rooster Day had to compete with the Demopolis High School Prom, ACT testing and baseball/softball tournaments held out of town, cutting into the number of people who would have run.

“I think the community support is undeniable,” she continued, “so I fully expect next year to come back stronger and outstrip this year.”

Brooker gave “a huge thank you to Lisa Compton for chairing Rooster Day the past two years. She spent countless hours on the event, built a fantastic team of volunteers and, through their collaborative effort, really put Rooster Day on the map!”

He also thanked Compton’s husband, Hunter, “for all the time he put into the event as a whole, but especially his work on securing our Rooster Boosters” and to all the donors, bidders and those who came to the Public Square to enjoy Rooster Day.

“We are already making plans for Rooster Day, April 14, 2018, and look forward to working with our co-chairs, Amanda Hall and Suzanne Young.”

Rooster Day celebrates the famous Rooster Auction held in Demopolis in 1919 to raise money for a bridge across the Tombigbee River linking Marengo and Sumter counties.

The state of Alabama, founded in 1819, kicked off a three-year celebration of its bicentennial this year. Rooster Day added to the festivities. The local event also helps mark the bicentennial of Demopolis this year and Marengo county in 2018.

(This article originally appeared in the Wednesday, May 17, print edition of the Demopolis Times.)