“We probably had somewhere between 500 and 700 people all day,” said Kenneth Broadway, who organized the event.
He said the committee that helped plan the event will meet Thursday to tally the money raised through T-shirt sales; a fund that will roll over to next year’s Norman Fest. They will also be counting the money raised by multiple fundraisers for Taylor Stewart, 12, of Norman who was diagnosed with leukemia when the committee began to plan Norman Fest.
“The Ellerbe Rescue Squad probably raised a few hundred dollars.” Broadway said.
He said they deserve praise for their professionalism, as the ambulance was needed twice during the event to transport two people to the hospital.
Several vendors brought festival foods such as funnel cakes, baked goods, hot-dogs and barbecue. Tommy and Brenda Caulder from Chesterfield, S.C., brought their pork wagon and sold barbecue, chicken tenders, hot wings and homemade sweet tea.
According to Broadway, all the vendors sold out of their food.
“The majority said they’d be back next year,” Broadway said.
The Methodist Men’s fundraiser auction for Angel Food Ministries raised more than $800, according to Broadway.
“It’s a wonderful organization,” he said.
Broadway said he had quite a few people that came from Montgomery County. Cindy Hogan brought her grandchildren to Norman Fest. Her grandson Lucian Gil, 5, got a jack-o’-lantern painted on his face.
“We drove here from Winston today,” she said. The family is related to the Stewarts, and came to help raise awareness and pray for her recovery.
“I hate that she’s sick,” said Hogan. “She’s a sweet girl.”
Amber Stone of Ellerbe provided face painting for the children at Norman Fest.
“I hope they’ll do it again next year,” Stone said. “But you can keep these gnats.”
Gnats were not the only things in abundance at Norman Fest, as Jane Bright found out. She starred in this season’s TV show Survivor. While running through the agility obstacle course, her Sheltie was stopped by sand spurs.
Bright said it was the only thing slowing her dog down, despite the 90 degree weather. Nothing slowed down Bright, as she explained how tough it was for her and her team to weather the tropical conditions during her stay in Nicaragua during the filming of Survivor.
“The young kids found out how tough I am,” Bright said.
Broadway said his biggest sponsors were Ellerbe Telephone, WLWL, the Sheriff’s Office and the Fire Rescue squad. He said he was able to learn a lot from the Candor Peach Festival Committee, and that next year he prays for good weather for the second Saturday in October for the second annual Norman Fest.
Staff Writer Dawn Kurry can be reached at (910) 997-3111 ext. 15, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.