Hecker turning 125

The Village of Hecker is preparing for its 125th anniversary in 2020. Monroe County Bicentennial co-chairman Mike Kovarik was at Hecker Village Hall last Tuesday to present a check for $1,500 toward this effort. Pictured, from left, are Arnold Eckart Sr., Kovarik, Aaron Eckart, Hecker Mayor Charles Kujawski and Mike Karban.

The Village of Hecker will be celebrating its quasquicentennial, or 125th anniversary, in 2020.

Village officials are organizing a dinner and dance, fish fry, fireman’s muster, and parade in 2020 to commemorate the milestone.

Hecker Mayor Charles Kujawski said that “one of the big events next year will be the picnic,” which will take place Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020.

Preparations for the 125th anniversary celebrations began Aug. 13 when Kujawski accepted a $1,500 check from Monroe County Bicentennial co-chairman Mike Kovarik at Hecker Village Hall. 

The money came from proceeds raised from the Monroe County Bicentennial celebration and will be used to help fund Hecker’s anniversary celebration.

Kujawski also noted that Hecker will be hosting a series of events to help raise funds for the quasquicentennial.

“The celebration will kick off with a fundraising dance Sept. 14 at the Hecker Community Center,” Kujawski said.

The dance begins at 8 p.m. with doors opening at 7 p.m. and will feature the band Freefall. 

Events in 2020 will include a banquet on Jan. 4 and fish fry on Feb. 28. 

“In the coming months, future details and events will be announced on our Facebook page, Hecker Illinois Quasquicentennial, or hecker.illinois.gov,” Kujawksi added. 

The village will be celebrating its incorporation in 1895 – not the founding of a town named Freedom in the 1840s where Hecker now stands.

The town changed its name in 1895 when it received complaints from the postal service about another town in Illinois already named Freedom.

Citizens chose the name Hecker in honor of Col. Friedrich Franz Karl Hecker, whose farm was near Summerfield in adjacent St Clair County. 

He was a German lawyer, politician and revolutionary who served as a brigade commander in the Union Army during the American Civil War.

The village also unveiled its logo for the 125th anniversary, which includes a photo of its namesake and farmland along with the sun shining over Hecker’s water tower.

Organizers are asking for individuals and businesses to consider making charitable donations. Those who donate will have their family name or business displayed at 125th anniversary events, souvenir items and a historical booklet.

For more information on how to donate, call 618-473-2300.

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Scott Woodsmall

HTC web