Google Map of Wheeler Park
2013 : July 21 – July 27
Sunday, July 21st – Campers Only, Campers cover dish dinner, 7:00 pm (Campers only, please bring a cover dish, but barbecue will be provided)
Monday July 22nd – Open to Public, Carnival 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 6:00 pm Little Mister and Miss Pageant, Ages 2-9, Entry forms will be available at Decatur Chamber of Commerce, Chalet of Jewelry & DATCU, DJ will begin immediately after pageant.
Tuesday, July 23rd – Open to Public, Carnival 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 7:00 PM “Put Yo’ Money Where Yo’ Mouth Is” Reunion Washer Tournament” Pre-registration at the Decatur Chamber of Commerce office. Prizes will be awarded.
Wednesday, July 24th – Open to Public – Carnival 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 7:00 PM Gospel Music including The Hinkle Family
Thursday, July 25th, Open to Public – Carnival 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 9:00 PM to 1:00 AM – Tejano Night
Friday, July 26th – Open to Public – Carnival 6:00 pm to 12:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 9:00 PM – 1:00 AM – Headlining – William Clark Green
Saturday, July 27th, Open to the Public – Carnival 6:00 pm to 12:00 pm(???$ bracelets) – 9:00 PM – 1:00 AM – Jake Hooker and the Outsiders with Special Guest Tommy Hooker
Parking is conducted by the Decatur Lions Club, a non-profit organization, and they charge 5 dollars per vehicle
The jurisdiction in charge, is the “Wise County Old Settlers Reunion Committee, Inc.
Wise County Old Settlers Reunion Committee, Inc. has a location in Decatur, TX. Active officers include Mark Jones, Cyndi Fernihough, Orvelda Bridges, Erica Eison, Pat Fennell, Misty Hudson, Sharon Montgomery, Pat Murphree, Russell Reynolds, Eva Ray Tindol and Van Gardner. Wise County Old Settlers Reunion Committee, Inc. filed as a Domestic Nonprofit Corporation on Thursday, March 25, 1982 in the state of Texas and is currently active.
On April 22, 2013 camp owners were mailed a letter asking for volunteers to serve on the Board for the next three years. By June 1, 2013, 12 letters were received and because there are 12 seats, these are the board members for the next three years beginning on July 28, 2013. Orvelda Bridges, Julie Christian, Erica Eison, Jim Enoch, Cyndi Fernihough, Van Gardner, Misty Hudson, Mark Jones, Sharon Montgomery, Patrick Murphree, Russell Reynolds, Eva Ray Tindol.
ISSUES that need to be addressed during the next few years are (and feel free to comment on this website, and I will add to these issues)
1. Why are we open for only one week per year? – Why not be open for at least one week prior to the Reunion Week, and also be open another part of the year?
2. What is the deal with plumbing? Why not greatly improve the public facilities, and allow private facilities at the cabins?
3. Why can’t we improve the Pavilion and kids play area? A fund drive and building committee could be created to make major improvements to these facilities such that they can be used more effectively during the Reunion and also other times during the year.
4. Other ideas
REUNION RULES – for CAMPERS
1. You are responsible for disposing of your trash in the dumpsters. Large items need to be deposited in the large open-top rollaway dumpsters in the far each parking lot. There is no curbside pickup.
2. You are responsible for disposing of any tree limbs, brush, etc. that you clear away from your camp. It cannot be dumped in the creek, dumpsters or rollaway.
3. Camp stickers are to be permanently affixed to the inside of the windshield on the passenger side. Do not use tape. Switching from one vehicle to another is not allowed.
4. Please be courteous to nearby camps when parking your vehicle. (( This is a huge issue, because campers receive 3 stickers for each lot and there is not even enough room to park half of those cars. All days but Friday and Saturday are usually okay, but campers should not believe they are entitled to all of their sticker parking places each and every night. ))
5. No bicycles, skateboards, etc. after 6:00 pm
6. No one (campers or visitors) is allowed in the carnival area after it closes.
7. Water balloons are to be filled in the camps and not in the restrooms. The balloons are to be filled with water only. At no time are balloons to be frozen or have any type of foreign objects or matter inside. Water balloon activities cannot begin until after 10:00 PM and only children 10 years old and younger can participate.
8. No slingshots, potato guns, or launchers of any kind are allowed at any time.
9. At the end of the Reunion, turn off the water to your camp at the cut off. Any plumbing repairs made to a camp due to water not being cut off, will result in a billing to the individual camper. Camp stickers will not be available until the bill is paid. Campers need to check their camp as soon as possible for water leaks.
10. No portable living quarters, external portable toilets, or tents are allowed in the camping area.
Stickers will go on sale beginning July 2 at Chalet of Jewelry from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Tuesday to Saturday. This is a lease year. The sticker and lease fees were increased at the campers meeting last year by a unanimous vote by the attending campers. The new fees are $35.00 per lot for stickers and a $50.00 lease fee per lot.
If you have refrigerated window units in your camp, there is a $10.00 per day charge.
History of Wise County “Old Settlers” Reunion
The Wise County Reunion – Decatur, TX
The Confederate veterans of Wise County are said to have held occasional reunions in the 1860s-1870s. Old settlers invited both the Confederate veterans and Wise County pioneers to an 1881 reunion at Cold Springs. This was on July 12, the anniversary of Captain George Stevens’ victory over hostile Indians in 1874. About 5,000 people attended the 1881 reunion. The “Wise County Messenger” reported a successful day -”only the music being a failure”. Events included speeches and picnicking. The reunion began to occupy the present site in 1896. By 1900 it extended to three days – honoring old settlers on the first, the veterans on the second, and daughters and sons of Confederates on the third. Sometimes 12,000 would attend, parading from courthouse to camp ground. Programs included candidates’ speeches, rodeos, and sham battles. Evenings were devoted to visiting. In 1909, the grounds were leased for 25 years. Later, campsites were leased and improved by participants. The Wise County Old Settlers Association, formed in 1904, sponsored a 1907 Pioneer History by C. D. Cates. Extended to a week, with visiting in daytime and stated events in the evenings, this reunion is now the oldest recurring public event in the county. (1976)
Gallery of pictures of Cabins from 2011:
New Rides for 2012 Reunion