ALLOUEZ (NBC 26) — The Village of Allouez turns 150 in 2023. Its residents celebrated the milestone Thursday evening in the best way they know how — with fellowship and community.
The village hosted a party at Green Isle Park, featuring live music and food trucks to honor the sesquicentennial occasion.
"Many of the people that were born here still reside close — maybe not right in Allouez but they reside close but it's just a friendly community," Al Mastens, a lifelong resident, said.
Mastens is a member of the Historic Allouez Society, which details the history of the village.
Allouez's namesake is Father Claude-Jean Allouez, a French Jesuit Catholic missionary who established the first permanent mission on The Fox River in 1671, according to the Society. The residential area grew, but the village did not officially separate from present-day Bellevue until 1873.
The village hoped Thursday's celebration would pay homage to the centennial celebration of 1973, which lasted for a week. Green Isle Park was also a focal point of that celebration.
"It's a unique milestone for a community to be celebrating that many years in existence," Village Administrator Brad Lange said.
Lange said the party has been in the works for six years. It featured the Green Bay band Big Mouth & The Power Tool Horns, as well as three food trucks, a beverage stand selling local brews, and other Allouez-centric displays.
Formerly the village's park, recreation, and forestry director, Lange said he has been embraced by the community in his 28 years there.
"It's a place to feel safe, proud and have the ability to recreate," Lange said.
The ethos of the village of 14,000, Lange said, was on display Thursday.
"What makes Allouez fairly unique is our tree-lined streets, our beautiful park system, being surrounded by two waterways, East River and Fox River, trails on both sides ..." Lange said. "And the community. The involvement of the community."