Fundraiser for ‘Old Jail’ project is Saturday

Published 1:53 pm Wednesday, October 16, 2013

BURLINGTON — Jailhouse Rock will take on a whole new meaning at the second annual Historic Jail Preservation Corporation’s fundraiser this Saturday.

The event will raise money for the renovation of the “Old Jail” in Burlington.

A flag raising will take place at 1 p.m. and at 2 p.m., an Elvis Presley impersonation competition featuring employees from Lawrence County high schools will highlight the event, which has the theme of “Jailhouse Rock.”

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“Our goal is to renovate Lawrence County’s first jail,” Edna McClain, one of organizers of the fundraiser, said. “We raised enough money last year to renovate the second floor, but we still have lots more to do.”

Last fall the corporation held a “Jail or Bail” event where warrants were served on Lawrence County officeholders and business people. Those who got served had to pay bail to get out of jail. Lawrence County Commissioners and clerk of courts matched the money raised.

According to McClain, the corporation anticipates the building becoming a museum, community center or some type of educational tool. Renovating the structure had been the county’s participation in the state’s bicentennial in 2003.

“We want to raise as much as we can,” McClain said. “Aside from the required renovations, we would like to maybe add a kitchenette so community meetings can be held there. The more money we raise this time, the less we have to raise in the future. I would like to see this be our last fundraiser.

“We have our sights set on the completion of Lawrence County’s Bicentennial Project. It’s been a long time coming, but with your help and donations we can reach our goal.”

The building still has to be insulated, heating and air-conditioning installed and other renovations before the building will meet code, McClain said. The corporation recently found out a $10,000 grant may be available for the restoration.

Award-winning ribs by Aaron Jackson of Big Guys Barbecue will be served as well as Dan Fulks’ famous beans and cornbread. A peanut butter and banana sandwich will also be served in honor of Presley.

Checks can be mailed to: Historic Jail Preservation Corporation, 7208 County Road 1, Burlington, Ohio 45680.

McClain said once the corporation has a certificate of occupancy in hand, the fundraising efforts would be complete.

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday in front of the jail building at the 7400 Block of County Road 1 in Burlington. The top-three contestants will receive cash prizes of $100, $50 and $25, respectively.