The event, called Rusk Banker’s Holiday, is scheduled for 6 p.m. April 6 at the Bonner Bank Building in Rusk, adjacent to the Heritage Center.
The F.W. Bonner and Sons Bank, which was the first bank established in Cherokee County, dates back to 1884. The old bank building has been restored to its former glory and is on the museum grounds.
Stephanie Caveness, a lifetime member emeritus of the Heritage Center board, said the purpose of the gala is to honor the Bonner and Perkins banking families for their success and their beginning of banking in Cherokee County. She said the Heritage Center also wants people to become familiar with the museum and the importance of county history.
“It’s not just the Rusk museum. It’s the Heritage Center (for the entire county), so familiarizing them with that and that our mission is to preserve that history,” she said.
Mrs. Caveness said the come-and-go event will be a fun night that will feature a silent auction.
Items slated for the silent auction include a cross created by wood carver John Birkelbach; metal art; jellies and a cookbook; a stained glass cross and a set of two stained glass stars; a hand-carved walking stick; pearls; a movie and dinner for two at Chili’s; a sword; a face mask; two paintings; a tin cupcake cover with cupcakes; an arrangement donated by Flowers ‘N Things in Rusk; a chuck wagon supper for 20; VIP passes for four and a cab ride on the Texas State Railroad; a round of golf for four with two carts ($100 value); and various other things, according to a news release.
Refreshments will include artisanal cheese, ham and items from Gourmet Gardens.
Entertainment includes a saxophone and guitar duet and violin and guitar presentation, according to a news release. Ian Chandler will provide additional entertainment on the patio. Jason Ball will serve as auctioneer.
A Rusk High School group and the Cherokee Civic Theatre will be dressed in 1880s bankers’ costumes, according to a news release. Tours of the building will be available for attendees.
Mrs. Caveness said the Heritage Center hopes to make the Banker’s Holiday an annual event honoring families in Cherokee County.
Sponsor level contributions include Diamond Jim Brady, $1,000; Gold Nugget, $750; Silver Dollar, $500; and Greenback, $250. Sponsors will be honored from 5:30-6 p.m. on the evening of the event. Guest admission is $20 per person.
Residents who plan to attend are asked to make reservations by March 25. Checks should be mailed to the Heritage Center of Cherokee County, P.O. Box 974, Rusk, TX 75785.
More information is available on the Heritage Center of Cherokee County Facebook page or by calling Mrs. Caveness at 903 683-6235.