200 years later: Darien hosts Bicentennial Opening Ceremony

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Hundreds of people came to Town Hall in celebration of 200 years of Darien, including resident Tim Maher, who has lived in this town his whole life. “The town does care about the people,” he said.

Maher and his wife, Kathleen Bernadette, told News 12 that they love the comradery of the town and that they wouldn’t miss the chance to celebrate a community that has enriched their life.

“It’s a nice community,” Bernadette said. “It has a lot of things to do, especially for seniors. We have a wonderful senior center.”

The Darien High School Tudor Singers opened the event and the keynote speaker was Darien resident and "60 Minutes" correspondent Scott Pelley.

Pelley, who moved here 12 years ago, wanted to remind the audience that values matter.

“We’re all thinking a lot about the people who settled in this area and who made enormous sacrifices to create this wonderful town that we all live in,” Pelley said.


The chairman of the Darien 2020 Bicentennial Committee, Al Miller, told News 12 that they hope neighbors can look towards the future by being thankful of their past. In 1820, Thaddeus Bell founded the town.

“When he saw the proclamation to incorporate the town, it was called Bellville in honor of Thaddeus Bell, Revolutionary War hero,” says Miller.

It didn’t stay that way.

“He crossed it out and put Darien and to this day nobody knows why he named it Darien,” says Miller.

Yet, they are glad he did, and the charm of this town is why Miller, along with his volunteer committee has worked to make the town’s 200th birthday so special.

Some upcoming bicentennial events include Weed Beach Festival's Bicentennial Bash on June 6, Anniversary Day June 12 at 6 p.m. at Slawson Cemetery and a Heritage Day Celebration Oct. 24 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Darien Historical Society & Mather Homestead.

MORE: Darien 2020  

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