The upcoming unveiling of a portrait of Dorothy Knox Goodyear Rogers will serve as a tribute to Rogers, to her old Aiken winter colony home and to modern digital techniques.
Trustees of The Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch, Inc., City of Aiken officials and invited guests will celebrate the occasion at 2 p.m. on Sunday at Rye Patch.
Mayor Fred Cavanaugh and family members of Rogers will unveil the portrait at the Sunday event.
The Board of Trustees of The Friends of Hopelands Gardens and Rye Patch, Inc., with Executive Board President, John Korhonen, will host the ceremony and reception.
Beth Newburn, a past president of The Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch, Inc. recalled the existence of an oil portrait of Dorothy Rogers as a young woman that once hung in Rye Patch.
That portrait is now in the home of a Goodyear family member.
Newburn led efforts to work with the Goodyear family to have the likeness professionally photographed at its setting in another state.
Through a highly technical and innovative photocopying technique, the likeness will be soon returned to grace the dining room décor of Rye Patch.
Shelly Marshall Schmidt, whose Aiken studio equipment enables the process of giclee reproduction, engineered a copy hardly discernable from the archival oil painting.
Michael Smart framed the artwork.
The Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch, Inc. provided financial sponsorship of the entire project, as they have for other projects involving the Rye Patch, Hopelands Gardens, The Carriage Museum, Doll House and Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame.
The unveiling comes almost 30 years to the day that Monsignor George Lewis Smith proclaimed Rye Patch as “another jewel in Aiken's crown” at its opening to the public.
In the present day, Rye Patch, the 10-acre estate adjacent to Hopelands Gardens, remains as a historic structural preservation in Aiken and has been the backdrop for many local photo albums and a popular setting for weddings, receptions and meetings.
Rentals are available to residents through Aiken's Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism.
Mr. and Mrs. Edmund P. Rogers purchased Rye Patch in 1939.
They expanded and remodeled the dwelling and grounds and made it a setting for their extensive entertaining. One of these occasions was a dinner party for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
Joan Tower, who has since passed away, was the “driving force” behind the opening of the facility to the public in February of 1983, according to then-City Manager, Roland Windham.
Speaking at that dedication ceremony thirty years ago, Tower said that “Aunt Dot,” as Dorothy Rogers was known to those close to her, loved animals, golf, good food and people, especially giving people pleasure and comfort in her gracious home.
The home has carried that mission forward since Dorothy Rogers' children donated it to the City of Aiken after her death.
For more information about this unveiling or the Rye Patch, call 642-7650 or visit www.cityofaikensc.gov.