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47th Annual Festival
Was Bigger and Better


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The 47th annual Calhoun County Wood Festival filled the town of Grantsville last week, with something offered for everyone.

Booths wrapped around the courthouse, and the smells of barbecue and funnel cakes wafted down Main Street. If those weren’t your choice, there were many other options, including Chinese cuisine, corndogs, strawberry shortcake, and Italian sausage.

Local artisans and vendors set up in rainy weather on Thursday, but sunny skies prevailed Friday and Saturday.

The carnival kept children happy and parents busy. A petting zoo and camel rides were set up on Wayne Underwood Field.

A Confederate flag flew over an encampment of the 19th Virginia Regiment, Co. A. The “Johnny Rebs” were a part of the festival to promote a re-enactment of the Sycamore Skirmish in September.

For individuals who enjoy a little bit of dirt and a whole lot of muck, the Truck and Pro Mud Bog was held on Saturday at the industrial park on Rt. 5, with 194 entries in 10 classes.

Also riding into town for the festival was fun of a cleaner nature. Mayberry Memories, with Barney and Gomer, offered many laughs with memories of days when life was simpler.

The grand parade was full of pageantry, princesses, politics, and ponies. Kitty and Jeanne Wilson were marshals.

Festivities on the Main Street stage kept the crowd entertained.

The first Wood Festival Idol contest was a hit. Show stopper Autumn Blair, who will be an eighth grader at Calhoun Middle School, was the top pick of judges. She is the daughter of Jean and Pam Blair.

Bands played everything from classic rock and bluegrass to gospel and oldies. Calhoun natives from the band Dangerfield met again on stage for the first time since 1972.

Both Main and Market were filled with lawn chairs as the town bid farewell to the 47th Wood Festival. The fireworks finale filled the sky late Saturday night.

Congratulations to the Wood Festival officers, Judy Powell, president; Angie Hersman, vice president; Debbie King, secretary; and Jim Sullivan, treasurer; other members of the board of directors, Jackie Blankenship, Carol Sloane, Loretta Freshour, Shirley Ball and Paige Toney; and members-at-large, Colleen Sullivan, Jim McCormick, Joe Hersman, Roger Jarvis, Leonard Powell, Connie Sullivan, Bryan Toney and Andy Bremar.

It was a job well done by all.

Besides an opportunity for the county to be thoroughly entertained and totally overfed, the festival offered a time for reunion and reconnection. The streets were filled with familiar faces and old friends.

Grandkids danced and grandpas tapped their toes. Moms didn’t have to make dinner and dads got fried food and ice cream without any complaining.

In the words of Barney Fife, the Wood Festival, like his girl Thelma Lou, is “getting bigger and better.”

This Week's Editorial:

By Helen Morris:

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