County to celebrate 200 years

SIDNEY — Are you 200 years of age?

The answer is most likely “No.” However, 2019 will mark the 200th anniversary of Shelby County! Stick around for one more year and you can also celebrate the 200th birthday of the city of Sidney in 2020!

A multitude of events are in the planning stages to commemorate both bicentennials. Although the schedules and locations for all events are still being finalized, information ia being released about some of the upcoming events.

A 2019 Shelby County Bicentennial kickoff celebration will be held at the Shelby County Courthouse on Monday, April 1. Several local and state dignitaries will be on hand to speak about the history of Shelby County.

Hardin was the initial county seat. Activities to honor that community include a quilt show, the burial of a time capsule, educational projects for third-grade students throughout the county, and an activity book provided by the Sidney Daily News.

A Bicentennial MarketPlace will be held at the Shelby County Fairgrounds on Saturday, Sept. 7. Here vendors will display and/or sell antiques, repurposed furniture, Shelby County memorabilia, and much more.

A lecture series featuring topics of local history is but another aspect of the bicentennial celebrations under development. The history of transportation in Shelby County, the Rumley Community, a talk about children’s author Lois Lenski, and a tour of a restored one-room schoolhouse are already on the schedule.

Church communities in Shelby County played a major role in shaping the history and progress of the area. Two projects involving local churches are in the planning stages. On Oct. 19-20, many Shelby County churches will be open for tours and historical presentations. In addition, a directory of all county and city churches, written by high school students, is being developed as well.

More events will be announced in the months ahead. For the latest updates, follow Shelby County Ohio Bicentennial Celebration on Facebook and press releases to the local media. A website for the Shelby County – Sidney Bicentennial Celebrations is under development and is expected to be online shortly after the first of the year.

Do you want to get involved? Do you want your church to be included in the church tour and directory? Are you interested in having a booth at the Bicentennial MarketPlace? Would you like to help out by volunteering for a project or making a monetary donation? If your answer is “Yes” to any of these questions, contact Greg and Priscilla Wilt at or 937-497-8118.

Further information may also be obtained by contacting Sidney Mayor Mike Barhorst, Shelby County Commissioners Julie Ehemann, Tony Bornhorst or Bob Guillozet, or Tilda Phlipot at the Shelby County Historical Society.