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Patrons interested in enjoying a plethora of visual, literary, and performing arts can get ready to enjoy the annual Tallahatchie RiverFest in downtown New Albany.
RiverFest will be taking place Sept. 23-25, 2010 on the Union County Courthouse lawn and in surrounding locations, depending on the day and time of the event.
According to Union County Development Association Director Phil Nanney, “RiverFest celebrates the creative spirit of the region through which this river flows. With its source near the North Mississippi Appalachian foothills, the Tallahatchie bends its way through forests and wetlands as it crosses the hills into the mighty Mississippi.”
Musical entertainment will take place on the Union County Courthouse lawn on the Bob Johnson Memorial Stage and will be free to attendees just like most of the events, but there will be some children’s activities that will cost. The 2009 festival was attended by an estimated 10,000 people.
This year’s Tallahatchie RiverFest T-Shirt is once again designed by New Albany native Leslie Gray. Gray is a graphic designer and owner of ‘Gray & Co.’. T-Shirts are $13 for youth x-small through adult x-large; $14 for xx-large; and $15 for xxx-large. T-Shirts are available at the Union County Development Association office and will be available on Saturday of the festival at the Hospitality Tent. For more information, call 534-4354.
The musical entertainment will take place on the courthouse lawn beginning Friday evening starting at 5:45 p.m. and ending after the last performance at 9 p.m. On Saturday afternoon, the music will begin at noon on the Bob Johnson Memorial Stage and the entertainment will end with the headlining performance of country singer Marty Stuart and the Fabulous Superlatives.
Saturday morning's events begin with the BNA Bank 5K Run at 8 a.m. Paint the Town will begin at 10 a.m. and the Rock Bottom River Poker Run will begin at 11 a.m. In addition to the other RiverFest events, there is also the annual William Faulkner Literary Festival, which is sponsored by the New Albany Gazette. The speaker for this year's event is Mississippian Felder Rushing, an author and co-author of 15 gardening books, and a radio personality for National Public Radio's weekly live call-in gardening show, "The Gestalt Gardener."
RiverFest attendees will have several opportunities to hear him—first at the Union County Heritage Museum on the evening of at 6:30 p.m., Sept. 23 , in which the community will be celebrating the fifth anniversary of the Faulkner Literary Garden. At 7 p.m., Rushing will give a presentation at the museum as well as holding a book signing. Then on Friday morning, he will broadcast "The Gestalt Gardener" live from the Concord Inn from 9 to 10 a.m. At 10:30 a.m. he will head over to the Magnolia Civic Center and talk to students from New Albany and Union County schools about garden writing. Those who have written gardening essays in the literary competition are especially encouraged to attend any and all presentations, especially after the presentation, when the annual literary awards will be presented.
A special area will once again be dedicated to entertainment activities and vendors whose products and services are oriented toward children. Some of the events will be cookie decorating by Sugaree's Bakery, face painting by New Albany Pilot Club's Anchor Club members, Paint the Town at the Magnolia Civic Center, and more. In addition, a new group of inflatables will be in the Regions Bank parking lot where children can jump, climb and slide to their hearts’ content for a nominal fee. As always, Tallahatchie RiverFest is a family-friendly event.
For more detailed information, check out the Tallahatchie RiverFest special section in the Sept. 22, 2010 edition of the New Albany Gazette.