‘It is with great anticipation and a heavy heart that we, as the Katy Bridge Coalition Board, approach a new incarnation of the Katy Bridge Festival this year’ ~ Sarah Gallagher.

BOONVILLE – This year, the Katy Bridge Coalition is returning to its roots. Not only will they be having their next wine walk near the Katy Depot, but they will be showing off the Katy Bridge as well.

“This is our LUCKY 13th year of celebration and the seventh year of the Wine Walk. We have rebranded the event this year and will from now on refer to it as  "Spirits of the Katy Bridge" Festival,” Katy Bridge Coalition President Sarah Gallagher stated.

Gallagher expressed her sincere happiness when moving the festival where it began.

“We are going to move this year to the site of the original festival, the Katy Depot (Depot District) which was where we started those many years ago. We were younger then, there were more of us, however we were no less committed than we are now. This is truly a Labor of Love for us. And here we are, reinventing ourselves again,” she stated. “Since we began this vision quest so many years ago, we believed and still do , that the Katy Bridge is an iconic structure that speaks to our history, our culture, and our belief that we are about the business of America.”

Gallagher added that Boonville was a stepping stone for many wanting to head west.

“Those who settled here did so to assist in the process of moving America forward: WEST. We were and still are merchants and hosts and growers of food, makers of things. We care what happens. We have pride in our community, in our work, and in ourselves. The Katy Bridge represented that for us,” Gallagher stated.

This simple thought and measure was why the bridge was saved. For Gallagher, it could not have been achieved without the people, some of whom are no longer here. It was with a heavy heart she expressed her gratitude and thankfulness because they will be remembered.

“The people who began this journey believed in the rightness of saving the bridge. Some of them are gone. Dale Reesman, Pam Davis and Jim Painter were passionate about this bridge. Paula Shannon gave so very much of herself to this project. She has moved closer to her grandchildren in Colorado. Others who have served on the Board have had to move on to other projects and/or family commitments. Many still rally when called upon to help. We have added a few hard working members and still many of the original board members remain involved,” Gallagher stated.

For Gallagher, the bridge is much more than a heap of iron and steel, it is an image.

“The bridge image is used on much of our local promotion. It is an image like no other and it is OURS. I personally want to see this bridge completed and soon. Phase One completion is the reason we moved back to the Depot District. We have our new  River, Rails and Trails Museum, the Mitchell Car Museum, our Caboose, our depot housing the Chamber of Commerce and the Isle of Capri there to welcome Katy Trail travelers who come from all over the world to see us,” she added.”Boonville is a wonderful place. There are interesting, creative and caring people here. I believe this is no accident. We are still Americans in the truest sense of the word..and the Katy Bridge in all her glory stands for us.”

The Spirits of the Katy Bridge Wine Walk will be held on Saturday, June 3, from 4 - 8 p.m., in the Heart of the Depot District.

“Hear about our past and belong to our future. We welcome you,” Gallagher ended.

Gallagher is appreciated of all the support and individuals who have believed in the project over the years. Visitsavethekatybridge.org  and find them on Facebook for more information.