Festival Of Memories Will Fill Streets
The New Martinsville Riverfront Development Corporation is hoping to create memories this Saturday with a variety of wholesome fun for the entire family in the downtown area during the Festival of Memories.
After putting on the festival for five years, most of the committee members agree it offers a nice balance of events for women, men, and children. “We hope that you’ll bring your family and your friends and create some memories,” said Deanna McConaughey of NMRDC.
The River Heritage Quilt Show will take place at West Virginia Northern Community College both Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., while the remainder of the activities are on Saturday only. ArtsLink will also display quilts at the Francis Creative Arts Center at the corner of Maple and Washington Saturday from 1-4 p.m. Additionally, on the lawn of the Francis Creative Arts Center The Wayward Players will also be performing one-act plays, written by students, from 2 p.m. Make sure to bring a lawn chair for this event.
Saturday’s activities will begin at 9 a.m. with the Cruisers’ Unlimited Car Show until 3 p.m.
Master of Ceremonies Carman Harman will keep the crowd updated on the day’s events and make sure that the live entertainment stays on schedule at the outdoor Main Street stage. Crowd-pleaser Spike Riel will join Harman from 2-3 p.m. and will also host a dance at the city building at 8:30 that evening. Traditional rock music fans will enjoy Attaboy Luther from 3-5 p.m., and Streamline with their eclectic mix will take the stage from 5:30-8 p.m. During a break in Streamline’s set, at 6 p.m., an official welcome to the festivities will take place with Mayor Lucille Blum. Sean Maxwell will play the National Anthem at this time. The a cappella group One-A-Chord will entertain from 8:30-10 p.m. with a mix of doo wop and gospel music. Also, street musician Mike Ramiy will stroll the downtown area and entertain attendees in the evening hours.
Once again, children’s activities make up a big part of the festival. “The event is really about the children for us,” said McConaughey. “It’s about making memories for them.”
There will be a taxidermy display throughout the day. A bald eagle education program complete with Thunder, a spirited, patient, and independent raptor that was the victim of a gunshot wound in Jackson County will take place at the Lincoln Theater at 2 p.m. Thunder was hatched and banded as a chick in a nest along the Delaware River in New York State in the spring of 1992. Now she has a seven-foot wingspan and weighs nine pounds.
There will also be live marble making at 3:30 p.m. Children can get their faces painted and their baseball pitches timed from 2-6 p.m. The popular wrist band handout for a free bike giveaway will be from 3-4:30 p.m. with the announcement of the winners to take place at 9:30 p.m. The giveaway includes 34 bicycles. The planning committee would like to remind everyone that this giveaway is free, as are all the other activities, so please be patient and kind during the giveaway.
Also for the kids, the sidewalk chalk art contest will be held from 7-8:30 p.m. and Bill Stokes will perform a magic show at the Lincoln Theater from 8:30-9:30 p.m.
For competitors, there will be a horseshoe tournament at the Moose Lodge starting at 1 p.m. and a corn hole tournament at 2 p.m. behind Baristas. Hydroplane Race Boats will also be on display throughout the day.
The CVB and NMRDC will be sponsoring free sternwheel cruises along the Ohio River during the Festival of Memories. Tickets for the 1 p.m. CVB-sponsored cruise may be picked up in person at the Wetzel County Museum at noon. Tickets for the 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. NMRDC-sponsored cruises may be picked up in person at 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. at Presto Lunch. Those who are aged 15 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
The grand finale will be a fireworks display at the south end of town at 10:30 p.m. Steve Osbourne of Pyrotechnics, Inc. is returning to present the show to light up the night sky, putting on one of the best shows around.
In addition local artisans, crafters, and non-profit organizations will be selling a variety of tasty foods. The NMRDC invites folks to spend the whole afternoon and evening on the river. “It’s a wonderful day,” commented Mayor Blum.