Several people behind scenes to great festivalPublished 9:21am Thursday, July 25, 2013
This past weekend’s River and Blues Music and Arts Festival was an even bigger success than the inaugural event in 2012. Thousands of people were drawn to the downtown area near the river to enjoy music, food, arts and crafts exhibitors, children’s activities and more.
While the crowd grew progressively larger as the day wore on, many attendees came early and stayed late. The entertainment area stretched from Gold Star Park to the Wetumpka Civic Center. Many visitors spent their time lounging in whatever shady spot they could claim. They also wandered along the riverwalk between the two stages and mingled with friends and acquaintances. Some went all-out, setting up tents and tables, but most limited themselves to chairs and coolers.
A pat on the back is certainly in order for the organizing committee members – Jessie Barksdale, Thad Hankins, Tiffany Robinson and Pat Whatley. They did a great job again this year and are most deserving of appreciation for their efforts.
They are quick to point out that the festival is offered free through the support of sponsors who provided goods, services and funding. This newspaper is proud of have been one of those sponsors.
Credit is also due to City of Wetumpka employees and officials for their work and support. A number of departments were involved in the event, most noticeably public works, the police department and the fire department.
There were also several dozen volunteers who assisted with all kinds of behind-the-scenes tasks. Those folks donated their time and talents with no expectation of recognition or reward.
The majority of attendees were lavish in their praise of all aspects of the festival – bands, the setting, vendors, crafters, the opportunity to bring their own coolers and the barbecue tasting.
Congratulations are definitely in order for all involved. This event shows what can be accomplished when people work together for a common cause and those in the community throw their support and presence behind it.