David B. Roosevelt, grandson of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and author of “Grandmere: A Personal History of Eleanor Roosevelt” who has made appearances on Larry King Live and C-Span will be visiting Warm Springs, GA to help raise funds for the preservation of Roosevelt's Little White House State Historic Site
**Unfortunately, Mr. Roosevelt will be unable to attend this event. The Masonic Birthday celebration will continue as scheduled.
An early morning fire on the grounds of the Roosevelt Warm Springs Institute for Rehabilitation in August destroyed one of the historic cottages built by Franklin D. Roosevelt during his stays in Warm Springs. That fire brought attention to the continued need for preservation and maintenance of the remaining historic properties in Warm Springs.
Roosevelt's Little White House is a state historic site that was unaffected by the fire. However, according to Brian Roslund, president of the non-profit Friends of Roosevelt's Little White House, funds are desperately needed for maintenance and improvements at the historic site.
"The Georgia Dept. of Natural Resources which oversees the operation of FDR's home has seen budget cuts in excess of 30 percent in the last three years." Roslund said. "The historic site has been forced to operate with less staff, supplies and equipment as Georgia State Parks work towards operating solely on revenues from park passes and admission sales."
"Our organization has pledged $33,000 to establish the Franklin & Eleanor Roosevelt Endowment Fund for preservation and future development of the historic site. We are providing a 1/3 match on any donations received up to $100,000 to establish this fund. We hope these funds will provide the historic site with the monies needed to become self-sufficient. We are honored to have the support of Mr. Roosevelt in this endeavor."
Mr. Roosevelt will be available to meet visitors and sign autographs from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. EST. Saturday, October 1, 2011 at Roosevelt’s Little White House State Historic Site. The Friends of Roosevelt's Little White House will be selling items for guests to have autographed including photographs and a limited quantity of Roosevelt's book "Grandmere: A Personal History of Eleanor Roosevelt" now out of print.
The Friends of Roosevelt’s Little White House will also be hosting a casual BBQ dinner with Mr. Roosevelt at the historic pools that evening at 6:30 p.m. According to Roosevelt’s Little White House manager Robin Glass “The historic pools will be filled with the naturally warm mineral water that first drew Roosevelt to Georgia. Dining poolside will be a unique and historic experience. Mr. Roosevelt will offer special comments about his family following the meal” said Glass. Tickets for the dinner are $65 per person, seating is limited to sixty individuals and reservations are required. All proceeds will benefit the Friends of Roosevelt’s Little White House.
Mr. Roosevelt's visit will also be associated with the dedication of a plaque by the Georgia Masonic Lodge, marking the 100th anniversary of FDR's acceptance into the Freemason's. The Masons have scheduled a parade with marching bands and the Shriner’s driving their little cars in downtown Warm Springs at 11 a.m. A ceremony is scheduled for 1 p.m. EST at the historic site, on Saturday, October 1, 2011. The public is invited to attend.