Residents and city officials will come together tonight to commemorate its sesquicentennial and celebrate the holiday season.
Tonight's festivities begin at 6:30 with Mayor Tommy Allegood reading "The Night Before Christmas" at Acworth's Depot downtown. Between 6:30 and 7, Santa will arrive in Acworth on a special birthday float.
"The float's theme is the 150 years," James Albright, the city's parks and recreation director said. "Santa will be riding in on a birthday cake float."
Along with Santa's arrival, the city will be lighting its Christmas tree. There will be performances from several local school choirs and dance teams.
A committee of 15 Acworth residents was tasked with planning the celebration, along with the other 150th anniversary events throughout the year. Some of the committee members include Amanda Sutter, director of downtown development, tourism and historic preservation for the city of Acworth, Abby Parks, chairwoman of the Acworth Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, Phillip Roebuck, a board member of the Acworth Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Jimmy Durham.
Roebuck, a former city councilman in the late 60s and early 70s, said the town had roughly 3,500 residents when he came from South Carolina to be a first-year teacher at North Cobb High School. Roebuck also taught a fellow committee member, Larry Griffin, who was one of the city's first African-Americans to integrate into North Cobb High School when it was desegregated in 1966. North Cobb was the first high school in the county to accept African-American students, Roebuck said.
"I can't tell you anything negative about that process. The people were just as great then as they are now, and being a part of one-third of this birthday, I have seen how it is grown and still thinking it is a great place to settle, work and play. So I wanted to be a part of the time we could celebrate that," Roebuck said.
The mayor and the city's Board of Alderman are giving each Acworth family who attends tonight's events a commemorative 150th Christmas Ornament, which can be picked up next to the red sleigh at the Depot.
Committee members also developed a history book filled with stories of Acworth's last 150 years, which can be purchased for $7.50 at Acworth City Hall.
Several of Acworth's downtown merchants are offering specials tonight and this weekend. The celebration will end at Henry's Uptown restaurant with a 9 p.m. Squirrelheads concert for people 21 and up.
For more information on the festivities visit www.acworth.org/150/events.