Chapter 34 Arkansas of the Colonial Dames of America, which has members in the local Central Arkansas area, recently met with other ladies and gentlemen from around the state at the annual George Washington Luncheon at Hot Springs Country Club.

This was the 10th anniversary observance of this group’s Washington’s Birthday Celebration. The event was the inspiration of USAF (retired) Col. Duane Evert Vandenberg who died Dec. 22, 2012. Vandenberg felt Washington deserved his own birthday celebration as it was in the past, instead of combining Washington with all the other Presidents on Presidents Day.

Various Colonial hereditary groups such as Colonial Dames of America organize and sponsor the luncheon. Many of these ladies belong to numerous Colonial hereditary groups such as Daughters of the America Revolution, National Society of Daughters of Founders and Patriots of America, Huguenot Society, Mayflower Society, Sons of the American Revolution, Guild of Colonial Artisans and Tradesmen and many other groups.

This year’s speaker was Dr. Wade Derden, head of the History Department at National Park Community College in Hot Springs. This year the group was able to give a $400 scholarship to Lisa Payne, a student at NPCC.

The luncheon is provided as a service to the local community and is open to the public. Colonial Dames generally meets twice a year at the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock to accommodate people throughout the state.

Colonial Dames is open by invitation to women 18 years and older who have an ancestor that provided substantial help to Colonial America. Colonial Dames headquartered at Mount Vernon Hotel Museum and Garden in New York City and was organized in 1890. Women who are interested in knowing more about Colonial Dames of America may contact President Mary Reid Warner at 501-922-6598.