The third annual Norman Fest was greeted by clear, sunny weather and many families spent their day in the field, listening to music, enjoying food and visiting with friends and community members who joined in supporting Norman on Friday and Saturday.
“This year’s event went very well,” said Norman Mayor Kenneth Broadway. “First of all, we were blessed with a beautiful day. It was a wonderful day.”
This year, a car show graced the field, showing off classics with pearlescent paints and restoration under the hood. An Andy Griffith replica sheriff car was on the field as well.
“This was the first year for the car show,” said Broadway. “We had representation from Montgomery, Moore and Richmond counties.”
If you didn’t go to Norman Fest, but passed by, you may have seen a helicopter somewhere over Highway 220. Helicopter rides entertained people for the second time this year.
“This year’s helicopter rides were very successful, thanks to Russ Platt of Concord and his team for being very professional,” said Broadway.
The music line-up grows each year as well, and as Broadway recommended, the field was full of folding chairs in front of the stage.
“People enjoyed the music,” said Broadway. “I would recommend this combination of music to anyone. Eastern Seaboard opened the festival and at 1 p.m. Anna from Eastern Seaboard band sung ‘I will always love you’ in memory of Taylor Stewart, with balloons being released. The special guest was Anna’s mom, who was a western style Dale Evans/Roy Rodgers type of entertainer. Then came the Sand Band, with the beach and blues music. The people stayed around ‘til the last song was sung.”
The Norman Fest was started two years ago, when Broadway wanted to bring the community together, put Norman on the map and raise funds and awareness of young Taylor Stewart’s battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Stewart was able to attend the second Norman Fest after recovering from a successful bone marrow transplant, where she was able to spend the day with her mother. Stewart, 14, lost the battle on Sept. 7, at her home. A table was set up to collect donations in memory of Stewart, with pictures of her for viewing.
This year the vendors lined the field on three sides, and filled the sides of the street. Whether the vendor sold homemade crafts, foods, was taking in donations or promoting their artwork or book, all vendors found community support and visitors were able to purchase jewelry, knives, books, baked goods or adopt a dog from the animal shelter.
“Vendors seemed to like our set-up; groups of four with some lines up on the highway,” said Broadway. “Over half want to come back and want the same spot.”
Next year, Norman will come together to celebrate 100 years of the founding of the town.
“Thanks to Fire and Rescue, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, my major sponsors Ellerbe Telephone Company, Coltrane Signs, Pee Dee Electric, Ellerbe Pharmacy, G104, Allen Bro’s Timber, WLWL-770 Big Wave Radio and so many other sponsors. There were too many to mention. Personally, I want to say thank you to the festival committee. This year’s event had very little problems. We all had our jobs to do and everything came together,” said Broadway.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.