Keeping the story alive… Sycamore Hot Hat Shakers alive and well

Published 11:49 pm Thursday, May 20, 2021

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Before COVID-19 raised its ugly head, there was a group of ladies that were always busy and very distinguishable anywhere they were at by the red hats they wore on their outings.

Activities were brought to a brief halt, but one thing about the Sycamore Hot Hat Shakers – one can’t keep hold them down forever.

“A lot of people say that they don’t see our pictures in the paper anymore and want to know if we are still doing things,” said Queen Kay Millsaps.

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“We have never missed except during when this virus has been around and we didn’t meet. March was the first month that we started back and we met at Grace Meadows in Johnson City last month.

“I had everything planned for last year and we weren’t able to do anything.”

For the month of May, the Hot Hat Shakers held a Charcuterie Board Party which was held at Simply Elegant Bakery and Catering in downtown Elizabethton on Thursday afternoon.

Charcuterie was created by the French in the 15th Century and is pronounced “shahr-ku-tuh-ree”.

Millsaps surprised all the ladies at the luncheon with a Charcuterie board for them to personally take home.

The group is made up of ladies 50-years-old or older and meet once a month to do activities both locally and out of state. The ladies have traveled to North and South Carolina as well as taking a trip to the beach.

There are 20 members of the Hot Hat Shakers.

In the past, the group has done activities that not were only fun things for them, but they worked to help out the community as well.

“We do things to help in the community like where we brought those people into town and every store in town opened up and everybody in town visited the stores and it became so popular that the next year we invited everybody back again,” said Millsaps.

“We did that for quite a few years and we stayed at Doe River Gorge with that many ladies for the weekend and then we would do different tours in town.

“We had ladies from Greeneville that came to help us when we did shows on the stage. I think that we raised $1,200 for Sycamore Shoals State Park on one occasion.”

With members of the group getting older, some require assistance with such things as wheelchairs and according to Millsaps, the group works together to help each other out.

As mentioned earlier, the Sycamore Hot Hat Shakers are easily visible by their hats. Millsaps took a moment to explain the different colors of hats one may see when the group is out.

“We always wear red hats and if it’s your birthday month you wear a purple hat. We do take people under 50-years-old and they wear pink hats,” shared Millsaps.

She said the group truly loves the opportunity to go out and be sociable as well as visit other groups.

“It gives us the chance to go out and be sociable and it’s nice to go out and visit other groups to see what they do and with our group, we try to be fairly active – not to just go eat but we do other activities,” commented Millsaps.

So for those wondering – the Sycamore Hot Hat Shakers are alive and well and don’t be surprised to see them out in an area close by in the near future.