Celebrate Indiana's Bicentennial in Kokomo!

A variety of events will be held throughout the year - all in celebration of our state's 200th birthday in 2016. Visit www.Indiana2016.org to learn more about Indiana's Bicentennial.
Indiana 2016

Indiana 2016 Bicentennial Logo

IN 2016 Torch Relay

Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay in Howard County – October 5, 2016 

The Bicentennial Torch Relay, one of Indiana’s 2016 statewide signature events, will go through Howard County on Wednesday, October 5, 2016, passing by many landmarks and local points of interest, including Highland Park, Kokomo Automotive Museum, Indiana University Kokomo, Northwest Park, Kokomo Speedway, Elwood Haynes Museum, Foster Park, Seiberling Mansion, and the Courthouse Square among many others. The Relay will start at 3:30 p.m. and will end with a closing ceremony at approximately 5:00 p.m. on the Courthouse Square.

Join us for a community celebration in Downtown Kokomo from 4:00-7:00 p.m. with kid’s activities, local historical and automotive exhibits, music by the Kokomo Park Band and Kokomo Men of Note, Indiana Bicentennial penny press, torch relay selfie station, and the state’s Indiana Bicentennial Experience – a traveling museum on wheels depicting Indiana’s 200 years of history.  To learn more about the Indiana Torch Relay, visit www.Indiana2016.org/torchrelay or download the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay app!

The Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay route through Howard County can be seen here.

Find a complete list of Howard County torchbearers here.

For more information, call (765) 457-6802 or contact Sherry Matlock at smatlock@kokomo.wpengine.com.

Read more about the 24 Howard County torchbearers (in alphabetically order.)  Some were nominated posthumously and will be represented by a substitute torchbearer.

Norman Bridwell

(Represented by Noah Knights, a Northwestern Elementary School student)

Norman Bridwell, born in Kokomo, created the Clifford the Big Red Dog series that has been published for 50 years and has sold 150 million copies. Died in 2014.

Brett Daniels

(Represented by Angela Daniels, his widow)

Brett Daniels was instrumental in creating the Kokomo Summer Concert Series held in the Foster Park Performing Arts Pavilion and bringing top entertainment acts to the city’s Haynes Apperson Festival each Fourth of July.

David Emry

David Emry is actively involved in the American Cancer Society and its Relay for Life event in Howard County, Smoke Free Kokomo, Daughters of the American Revolution, iroK Foundation, Grace United Methodist Church, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and Discover Howard County Trails.

David Foster

(Represented by David Foster, a relative)

The county’s first merchant and largest landowner in 1844, David Foster lobbied for the establishment of the county seat, agreeing to donate 40 acres near his home on Wildcat Creek. Died in 1877.

Robert Gollner

Founder, director and past president of the Automotive Hall of Fame in Howard County and avid car collector, Robert Gollner is the co-founder of the Kokomo Event Center and the Kokomo Automotive Museum.

Greg Goodnight

Since taking office in 2008, Mayor Greg Goodnight has focused on establishing strong and sustainable economic development policies, improving quality of life and lowering government spending by promoting innovation and efficiency.

Jeff Griffin

Director of Purdue University’s College of Technology at Kokomo, Jeff Griffin volunteers his time to the Howard County Automotive Heritage Hall of Fame and the Kokomo Automotive Museum.

Elwood Haynes

(Represented by Jack Double, a Wallace School of Integrated Arts student)

Invented America’s first automobile, stainless steel and the alloy stellite, Elwood Haynes’ namesake lives on through Haynes International headquartered in Kokomo. Died in 1925.

Charles Edward Henry

(Represented by John O’Donnell, current owner of Kokomo Opalescent Glass)

Charles Henry founded Kokomo Opalescent Glass in 1888 during the Indiana Gas Boom, and the world-renowned company is still in operation as the oldest art glass producer in the country. Died in 1892.

Elwood “Bud” Hillis

(Unable to participate, will be represented by State Sen. Jim Buck)

Born and raised in Kokomo, Elwood Hillis served as a member of the House of Representatives from 1966 to 1970, and served Kokomo and Indiana’s 5th District for 16 years as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Peggy Hollingsworth

Peggy Hollingsworth exudes Hoosier Hospitality to all by sharing her vast knowledge of and love for everything Indiana, starting with her family heritage of the Hollingsworth, Newlin, Butler and Stratton ancestors that were pioneers in Honey Creek Township in western Howard County.

Glenn Kenworthy

(Represented by his nephew, Ken Gleason)

A firefighter for the city of Kokomo when he entered the armed forces during World War II, Glen Kenworthy was aboard the U.S.S. Indianapolis when it sank in 1945. He did not survive.

Lt. General William Kepner

(Represented by Richard Miller, president of Howard County Council)

William Kepner fought in two world wars — as an infantryman and a pilot of balloons, fighter planes, and bombers — and became one of the world’s most accomplished pilots of lighter-than-air craft. Died in 1982.

George Kingston

(Represented by State Representative Heath VanNatter)

Creating a new carburetor design in the early 1900s for Henry Ford’s Model T, George Kingston founded the Byrne-Kingston Co., which eventually merged with Kokomo Brass and Kokomo Electric to become Kingston Products operating until 1989. Died in 1946.

Tiffany Massey

Dedicating her run in honor of fallen Howard County Deputy Carl Koontz, Tiffany Massey serves as a firefighter and EMT with the Russiaville Volunteer Fire Department and ambulance service.

Michael Morgan

A 20-year member of the United States Air Force Reserves serving on the refueling wing at Grissom Air Reserve Base, Michael Morgan served in Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Freedom Sentinel and Exercise Iron Falcon.

Henry A. Perry

(Represented by Carol Jones, a relative)

Publicly proposing in 1929 the development of recreational opportunities and sites for African-American children, the Rev. Henry A. Perry was instrumental in founding the Carver Community Center in 1948. Died in 1967.

Rick Riddle

Former manager of Golden Corral in Kokomo, Rick Riddle was the driving force behind the annual Military Appreciation Days and bringing the American Veterans Traveling Tribute to Kokomo in 2011.

Gradyn Rogers

A childhood cancer survivor, Gradyn Rogers was recognized by President Barack Obama for his efforts in raising awareness and funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and was a finalist for the national Prudential Spirit Award.

Susan Sciame-Giesecke

Susan Sciame-Giesecke, the seventh chancellor of Indiana University Kokomo and Sagamore of the Wabash recipient, serves as chairwoman for the Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance board and represents Howard County on a national level as a board member on the University Economic Development Association.

Monroe Seiberling

(Represented by State Representative Mike Karickhoff)

One of the first to accept Indiana’s offer of free gas during the Indiana Gas Boom, Monroe Seiberling established the Kokomo Strawboard Co. in 1887 and Diamond Plate Glass Co. in 1889 and built the remarkable Seiberling Mansion. Died in 1908.

Kevin Summers

Kevin Summers has served the community as a member of the Kokomo Police Department, Kokomo School Board, Kokomo Common Council and other boards in Kokomo and Howard County.

Henry Waggoner

(Represented by Robert Hayes, Kokomo Common Councilman)

Henry Waggoner was the first African-American to serve as a police officer in what is considered the modern era for the Kokomo Police Department.

Paul Wyman

Serving as Howard County commissioner, Paul Wyman takes a strong interest in the community by accepting numerous leadership roles on a wide array of nonprofit boards and charities.

Cheer on the torchbearers! Residents and visitors are encouraged to line the relay route and at hand-off points to cheer on the torchbearers as they make their way through Howard County.

The following locations will serve as hand-off points, and those with asterisks are locations where residents can park, gather and watch:

  • Nickel Plate Trailhead at U.S. 35 and State Road 931
  • Kokomo Event Center/Kokomo Automotive Museum, 1500 N. Reed Road*
  • Intersection of U.S. 31 and 300 North (Smith Road) near Indiana Transmission Plant 1, 3360 N. Reed Road
  • North Davis Road (near City of Kokomo city limits sign)
  • Kokomo Speedway, 2455 N. Davis Road
  • Northwest Park, 1600 W. Judson Road*
  • Judson Road Christian Church, 2006 W. Judson Road*
  • Community Howard Regional Health Westside Specialty Hospital, 829 N. Dixon Road
  • Wallace Integrated Arts School, 2326 W. Jefferson St.
  • St. Vincent Kokomo, 1907 W. Sycamore St.
  • Seiberling Mansion, 1200 W. Sycamore St.*
  • Kokomo Senior Center/Foster Park, 721 W. Superior St.*
  • UCT Park, 1427 Kingston Road, along Walk of Excellence trail
  • Duke Energy, 1619 W. Defenbaugh St.
  • Highland Park, parking area across from Kokomo Parks & Recreation Department Office, 1402 W. Defenbaugh
  • Highland Park (in front of Vermont Covered Bridge)*
  • Elwood Haynes Museum, 1915 S. Webster St.*
  • IU Kokomo, 2300 S. Washington St., at main entrance
  • Kokomo Schools Administrative Services Center, 1500 S. Washington St.*
  • Corner of Washington Street and Park Avenue
  • Corner of Washington Street and Superior Street
  • End: Courthouse Square on Main Street*