Most people don't know it, but there's something special about Bowmanstown this year. It hasn't been highly publicized. In fact, as far as we know, there's no celebration for this extraordinary occasion.
The borough turns 100 this year.
According to the Bowmanstown Borough Authority's Web site, the borough was incorporated as a borough of Nov. 29, 1913.
The Web site states:
"Efforts to incorporate Bowmanstown as a borough occurred as early as 1892. The village contained about 300 inhabitants in 1896 but the nearby New Jersey Zinc Company soon added to its growth."
This site doesn't mention for whom the borough was named, but there are a lot of Bowmans residing in the Bowmanstown area.
Bowmanstown isn't a very large borough. It's population was 895 in the 2000 census. By 2011, the population was listed at 907, which is just 12 residents more.
A town this small sometimes has difficulty getting enough volunteers together for coordinated tasks. Possibly that's one reason why a full-blown, 100th anniversary celebration isn't scheduled.
There is one event scheduled. On Aug. 18, there is a Bowmanstown Community Picnic sponsored by Bowmanstown Area Residents Connected, the Bowmanstown/Parryville Lions Club, and Bowmanstown Fire Company.
Bowmanstown has a lot of great qualities.
It's has one of the nicest parks in the county.
It has a fire department that has some long-time, dedicated volunteers. Despite the small size of the community, the fire company has managed to continue having up-to-date, well maintained apparatus.
The fire company also lends its grounds to festivals that raise money not only for itself, but other organizations.
It converted an old school building into the borough hall, and has maintained the basketball courts on the site that came with the building. Too many towns have utilized abandoned school building but have removed the accompanying recreational facilities.
What does Wikipedia, the on-line internet dictionary say about Bowmanstown?
After listing the town's statistics, it has a special section on the Bowmanstown Diner. There's no question that the Bowmanstown Diner is a landmark and an asset to the community.
But here's what Wikipedia says about the diner:
"Arguably Bowmanstown's most famous landmark is the Bowmanstown Diner....The Bowmanstown Diner specializes in 'Good Pennsylvania Dutch Cooking.' Their signature dish is French Fries with Gravy. ."
Possibly there is still time for some residents to put something together for Bowmanstown that will tell of the town's heritage, that will point out how the Paint Mill was at one time a leading employer in the county, and that will bring residents to the town to show off businesses such as the Bowmanstown Diner.
Happy 100th birthday, Bowmanstown.
Celebrate. You deserve it.
By RON GOWER