This year’s Harvest Festival is going to be bigger and better than ever, according to Yadkin Arts Council’s president John Willingham.
Willingham and the council are celebrating the 37th festival this Saturday, Sept. 21. The Yadkinville event will continue the festival’s tradition of being the longest running annual festival in the Yadkin Valley.
This year the event will feature new attractions, new booths, and a few surprises for those who attend. If the numbers keep to their current trend, that could be a large number of attendees.
According to Willingham some 10,000 people attended the 2004 festival. That number jumped to 15,000 last year, he estimated.
Opening ceremonies take place at 11 a.m. on the main stage on Elm Street, with the event running from 9 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
Willingham said the event used to have the ceremonies at the very first of the day, but the opening events have been moved back to allow more people to attend.
As in previous years classic cars from the Yadkin Valley Cruisers will line Main Street.
Sheltered seating will be available for attendees while they eat from the festival’s “mega food court,” located at Elm and Jackson Streets.
Two stages will be used this year, as in years past. But this year the stages will alternate performances rather than at the same time.
Willingham said last year the simultaneous performances overshadowed each other a bit. Now the performances will compliment each other rather than let attendees hear two musicians performing at once.
The Oil and Renegar Band will begin the day’s music on the Arts Center stage at 10 a.m., followed by None Of The Above at noon, and Bluegrass Jam Session at 2:30 p.m.
The stage is located between the Cultural Arts Center buildings.
The main stage is located between the courthouse and the neighboring buildings on Elm Street, with Blues Deville at 1:30 p.m. and Risky Bizzness at 3 p.m.
The Yadkin County Agricultural Showcase will once again turn the parking area in front of the planning building into a livestock and equipment venue for kids of all ages.
New this year behind the Cultural Arts Center will be a traveling gem mine from Georgia. The owners travel across the Southeast bringing field trips to kids whose schools may not be able to take them long distances with the economic climate.
A “Demonstration Station” will stand at the intersection of Jackson and Main Street. Performers will show off their clogging, dancing and Zumba skills for audiences throughout the day.
While Willingham would not say what all the surprises were for this year, he did let The Ripple in on some of the sure-to-be hits.
Those who show up for the whole event won’t have to worry about missing any of the new features.
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