French Heritage Festival Returns After Year Layoff

By MARK EVANS

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Ste. Genevieve’s unique colonial history will once again come to life June 12, when the annual French Heritage Festival returns after a one-year hiatus.

The festival had to be cancelled in 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now the festival is back with a flourish and co-organizer Cathy Grusling believes it will make up for lost time.

“We’re only doing it till 6 o’clock this year,” she said, “but we’ve got a lot going on that day. We’ve added some things in the morning.

This year’s event starts with a 7 a.m. bird walk with a member of the Audubon Society. Participants will meet at the Welcome Center at Main and Market.

From 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.,  four gardens will be open to tour.

“This year, because the Garden Club is not having their Garden Walk, there are a few people in town who thought it would be nice to have a mini-Garden Walk,” Grusling said.

Mark Buchheit, at 330 S. Gabouri Street, Carl Kinsky and Susie Johnson at 64 N. Second, neighbor Nancy Fischer at 59 N. Second, and Felix Meyer on Jefferson Street are all opening their gardens for public view.

Meanwhile, the Sainte Genevieve Art Guild will hold a 10 a.m. ribbon-cutting for its new Art Center & Art Museum at 310 Merchant Street (in the old museum building). The building will be open to display art exhibits until 8 p.m., with kids’ activities 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and a reception 6-8 p.m.

(A separate article will appear in the June 9 Herald.)

“That’s exciting,” Grusling said. “It just adds to the festivities.”