Cowee Elementary School will be the setting of a special benefit for the Rickman Store on Friday, Sept. 9, from 6 to 9 pm. “The Cowee Country Jamboree” will commemorate the birthday of the beloved Tom M. Rickman who owned and operated the store from 1925 to 1992.
Friends of the Rickman Store invite the community to join the celebration that features the Heartland Band, Dave Steward, Mary Kay Sullivan and Henry Miller, Chris Bowers, Smokey and the Bandits, and Ronnie Evans. The Nikwasi Dulcimer Players will open the musical evening.
Tom Milton Rickman was born in Sept. 7, 1901. He purchased the general store in 1925. He dedicated his life to the trade and to his community. Those who met him and enjoy his friendship during the 67 years he stood behind the counters have many good memories to share about “Uncle Tom,” about his character, and about his generosity for the less privileged.
The historic Rickman Store was purchased by the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee (LTLT) in 2007 as an effort to preserve the cultural heritage of the Cowee-West’s Mill Historic District. It received recognition from the National Register of Historic Buildings in 2001. Since then, the Friends of the Rickman Store (FORS), a group of volunteer neighbors, have been keeping the building open to the community, have been restoring its original ambiance, and have been providing educational and artistic programs for the enhancement of the community life in Cowee and the county.
Tickets for the Cowee Country Jamboree will be available at the gate on Friday September 9. Children under 10 are free. Cash’s BBQ, Peppermint Patti’s Ice Cream & Sweets, and Cowee Convenience Store will provide a light supper and sweets. The Homegrown Buds 4-H Club will support the event popping popcorn and serving drinks. Attendees should bring lawn chairs or blankets to enjoy the event at the shelter in front of the school. In case of rain, the event will be moved to the school’s gym.
Cowee School is located on Cowee Creek Rd., seven miles north of Franklin by Hwy NC 28. Additional parking will be available at Cowee Baptist Church and Cowee Convenience Store. Everyone is invited to this special celebration.