of Fame to Host Bicentennial Bell Casting
of Ohio will celebrate its 200th birthday in 2003, and the Pro Football
Hall of Fame is throwing an early birthday party. On May 18 & 19,
2002, the Stark County Bicentennial Kickoff will be held on the Hall
of Fame grounds. The main event of the weekend-long kickoff celebration
will be a Bicentennial Bell Casting for Stark County.
Bicentennial Bell Casting is a part of the Ohio Bicentennial Commission's
statewide initiative to cast a bronze commemorative bell in each of Ohio's
88 counties. The Commission selected the Hall of Fame as the site for
the casting of the Stark County bell.
Company of Cincinnati will conduct the casting process in full view of
the public, using a "foundry on wheels." The Verdin Company,
founded in 1842, is one of the world's leading bell casting companies
and Ohio's oldest family-owned manufacturing company. Verdin commissions
include the 33-ton, 12-foot-tall World Peace Bell commissioned for the
millennium celebration, and the famed "Big Ben" bell in London.
On the first
day of the two-day event, bronze ingots will be placed into a furnace
that will reach temperatures in excess of 2,000 degrees. Over a period
of several hours the furnace will melt the ingots, which will then be
poured into the mold. On day two, after cooling overnight, the mold will
be cracked open by a sledgehammer.
bell, which will weigh approximately 250 pounds and measure two feet in
height, will then be cleaned, polished, and formally presented to the
be a festival-like atmosphere at the Hall of Fame during the two-day ceremony.
Area attractions, museums, cultural institutions, historical agencies,
recreation groups, and businesses and industry leaders all will participate.
There will be vender booths, food, and entertainment throughout the weekend.
Mar. 13, 2002)