UACA Historical Trivia: Did You Know?
- The Christmas Decorations Contest began in 1944.
- The UACA inaugurated the Youth in Government Program in 1955.
- Labor Neighbor Day originated in 1959.
- Memorial Day activities including the five-mile run began in 1971.
- Originally as an alternative to beggars night, the Haunted House was founded in 1977. It stopped in 2008, but started up again in 2010 as Golden Bear Scare.
UACA Historical Overview
Since the platting of the first lot on the old Miller farm, the Upper Arlington Civic Association with it’s predecessors, first established in about 1913, has been an indispensable part of the growth and vitality of the community.
In 1923, UA residents experienced the city’s first Fourth of July observance. Grandview and Marble Cliff were invited to participate in a cannon salute at sunrise, a flag ceremony, a grand march where everyone was urged to bring a flag, athletic events, contests and stunts for children and adults. The Fort Hayes Band, the Fife and Drum Corps of the Old Guard, a pot-luck picnic, an orchestra for dancing and a fireworks display capped the days activities.
Shortly thereafter, in July, 1923, the Upper Arlington Civic League was organized. The Civic League adopted this purpose: “To promote the general welfare of the individual, provide an ideal environment for life in the home, make Upper Arlington a most desirable community in which to live and to assist in developing a citizenship worthy and well qualified to assume a foremost position in life.”
In 1932, the tradition of commemorating Paul Revere’s ride began as volunteers rode through the city calling on residents to arise, put out their flags, and join in the celebration. In 1933, The Upper Arlington Civic Association as we know it today was born. On this year, the Fourth of July theme was “Every Home a Flag”. In 1935, the “Spirit of ’76” tableau was added to the celebration. Through the decades, even during World War II, the celebration has continued.
Over the years, the UACA has developed right along side the community it serves. Many programs have come and gone. Some long term, and others in response to particularly noteworthy circumstances in the community, state, or nation. Current programs include the UA Stage, Easter Candy Hunt, Memorial Day Five Mile Race, The Fourth of July Celebration, Labor Neighbor Day, Golden Bear Scare, and Christmas in the Park. Additionally, numerous appreciation dinners, Youth in Government, Junior Directors Scholarship Program, and the outstanding educator Golden Apple Awards fill the organizations schedule of events. While this history is by no means complete, it does recap many of the highlights of the Civic Association and it’s eighty plus year effort in making Upper Arlington a community of which it’s residents can be justifiably proud.