Adel to celebrate 175 years during Founders Day on May 21

Allison Ullmann
Dallas County News
A panoramic photo is taken in 1997. Residents are encouraged to participate in a recreation of the panoramic photo during the Adel Founders Day celebration on Saturday, May 21, 2022.

Adel will celebrate 175 years on Saturday. 

“It’s just amazing to see the changes in our community over 175 years. To think of how it started as a small settlement and has continued to grow and prosper and thrive,” Shirley McAdon said. “Thrive with us is our city motto and certainly, we feel that has been accomplished over many, many years. We’re just very grateful for all of the support of our community.”

Residents are encouraged to come out for a panoramic photo on Saturday to help kick off the Adel Founders Day celebration. Residents are asked to gather starting at 1 p.m. at the intersection of 9th and Main Street. The panoramic photo will be taken at 1:30 p.m. 

This will be the third panoramic photo taken during Founders Day, with the last ones being taken in 1972 and 1997. Those photos can be seen on the wall at Adel City Hall. McAdon is encouraging residents to come out on Saturday to help recreate the panoramic photo in front of the Dallas County Courthouse.

“Everyone should come and in fact, it would be great if they come as a group. They might want to come as a church group or the Rotarians or Lions or Kiwanis or Women’s Club or their family of several generations, their neighborhood,” McAdon said. “It would just be great if groups could come and stand together because it’s really a historic event, something that they’ll be able to see all through the years until we take the next one in 25 years. I hope everybody will just come and be part of it.”

A limited number of photos will be available and print forms can be found at the Founders Day celebration as well as the Adel Historic Museum. McAdon said Raccoon Valley Bank sponsored the photo 25 years ago and they are sponsoring it again this year. Though she added they are passing the ball to the Adel Historic Museum and proceeds from the photo sales will benefit the museum.

Following the photo, attendees are encouraged to walk down to the Community Stage and Pavilion for an ice cream social. Mini cupcakes, provided by River to River Bakery, and ice cream cups, provided by Fareway, will be available for attendees to enjoy while Mayor Jim Peters gives a short welcome.

The Adel Historic Museum will be open from 2-5 p.m. and two walking tours will be available starting at 2 p.m.

A Historic Walk of Adel tour will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 21 at part of the Adel Founders Day celebration.

Rebecca Hillmer will host the Historic Walk of Adel, which will start from the Stage and Pavilion. Dave and Nanci Sande will lead the Adel Cemetery Tour, which will start at the front gate of the cemetery in Kinnick Feller Park.

McAdon said both tours will be available at various times throughout the summer. The 175th anniversary will also continue throughout the year, with a time capsule, a digital update of Adel’s history, events during the Sweet Corn Festival and more.

“I’ve been more of a facilitator of ‘here’s a really great idea and here’s one,’ and just trying to put those together for a celebration that starts with Founders Day and will continue through the rest of the year,” McAdon said.

She encourages people to come out Saturday to help kick off the 175th anniversary celebration.

“Yes, definitely come out and celebrate with us on Saturday,” McAdon said. “We would love to have as many people as possible come be in the picture.”