The public is invited to help celebrate the life of George Washington Carver, the famed scientist who was born into slavery in Newton County.

This year's celebration will be a dinner at Crowder College on Friday, Jan. 3, 2014. Dr. Carver's story will be commemorated by two guest speakers: Dr. Eulanda A. Sanders and Paxton Williams.

Sanders is the Donna R. Danielson Endowed Professor of Textiles and Clothing at Iowa State University. Williams is the former director of the Carver Birthplace Association and is a recent graduate of the Chicago School of Law.

The proceeds from the dinner and a "silent auction" will be used to fund the annual Carver scholarship that is given to a local graduating high school senior or local home school student. Students who apply for the scholarship must either attend Iowa State University, Tuskegee University in Alabama, Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, or an accredited college within a 100-mile radius of Diamond, Mo. The student must commit to study science, art, agriculture, music or education.

In the past, the scholarship has been $500. The Carver Association hopes a successful dinner and auction will allow for a larger scholarship.

The schools are all associated with Dr. Carver or are close to the Carver National Monument. In his search for an education, Carver first attended Simpson College and then graduated from Iowa State University. He spent more than 40 years as a teacher at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama.

The dinner will be catered by Great Western Dining Service. Cost of the dinner is $15 and will be at 6:30 p.m. in the Arnold Farber Building on the campus of Crowder College.

Reservations are required by Dec. 27, and can be made by calling 438-3351 or by e-mail at

Auction items may be donated by calling this same number or using this e-mail address.