Scheduled for Oct. 9, the festival will feature music, food, demonstrations and activities. The festivities begin at 11 a.m. and last until 7 p.m. Lawn chairs are welcome.
The Angelaires will start the event on stage, performing gospel until 1:30 p.m., followed by The Sand Band, performing beach music at 2 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. Richmond County storyteller J.A. Bolton will perform on stage intermittently when bands take breaks.
Wood carvers Roy Armstrong and Willie Quick will demonstrate their craft throughout the day, as well as Wood Pecker Products, and potters Judy Cole and David Edwards from Montgomery Community College.
Barbecue will be served by vendor Tommy Caulder from South Carolina, who will come to Norman the evening before the festival to begin preparations.
“He’s the real deal,” said Kenneth Broadway, event organizer on the committee for the Norman Fest. He is looking forward to the diversity of festival foods. Allen Thames will sell funnel cakes, cotton candy, nachos, and other festival foods.
The Norman Methodist Church will serve hot dogs, and the Jonas Springs Methodist Church will serve snow cones.
“I thank the vendors for taking a chance with the first real Norman Fest,” said Broadway.
At 1:30 p.m. Jane Bright of Jackson Springs, also featured on this season’s Survivor TV show, will demonstrate agility by having her Shetland Sheepdogs run an obstacle course at her command.
The event will wrap up with the band Fortress, who will play from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. Following Fortress, an auction is scheduled to be held by the Norman Men’s Club, but Broadway said there have not been as many donations as the committee had hoped for. They continue to seek donations for the auction.
The Norman Community Closet will attend the event in hopes to have the public help them clear out their collection. Bags of clothes are $5, and it’s a by buy, get one free.
The Ellerbe Rescue Squad plans to attend the event, and will seek donations in a fundraiser for Taylor Stewart, 12, of Norman who was diagnosed with leukemia shortly after the planning of the Norman Fest began in late July, according to Broadway. Stewart’s father is part of the squad. Broadway said that if Stewart is not able to attend, a webcam will broadcast the Norman Fest live to her. Flowers For You Flowershop of Ellerbe will sell $1 balloons that read, “Norman Fest 2010 - Pray For Taylor.”
T-shirts commemorating the event will be for sale for $10, and will depict a friendly gnat, as the committee had a joke about ‘gnat’ being an acronym for “good neighbors around town” as well as gnats being something Norman has in abundance.
The proceeds from the T-shirt sales will be put towards next year’s Norman Fest, ensuring the new celebration becomes a tradition and something Norman and Richmond County residents can look forward to come fall, according to Broadway.
Broadway extended his thanks to sponsors that made the festival a possibility, including Dan Bennette of Ellerbe Telephone, the Town of Norman, WLWL Beach and Blues radio station, the committee that helped coordinate the event, “along with many others.”
He extended special thanks to the Richmond County Sheriffs Office and Major Clemmons. The Sheriffs Office will be blocking East Moore Street and redirecting traffic through Snow Road, as well as serving as event security.
With only three more weeks to go, Broadway hopes the weather will hold. He hopes rain will come in the days preceding the festival, and allow the temperatures to drop enough for folks to enjoy the outdoor events.
“It’s kind of iffy, but I believe it’s going to happen,” mused Broadway.
Staff Writer Dawn Kurry can be reached at 997-3111 ext. 15., or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org