Organizers preparing for new ParkFest Celebration Event – Honoring First Responders


Organizers of “ParkFest” are gearing up for the final days of preparation for a new event they hope will be an annual one for the Town of Williamston.

Jack Ellenburg and Nancy Carroll, with help and encouragement from Williamston Mayor Mack Durham, the Town of Williamston, the Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle group and others, are putting the final touches on the event which is being billed as “A Hero’s Celebration.”

Ellenburg said “ParkFest” will bring together different philosophies and groups of people while at the same time providing another event for the town.

“We are bringing together those serving and those who have served as first responders, and honoring them in a festival atmosphere,” he said. “We are also educating the community with police cars, ambulances, fire trucks and providing information to the community.”

ParkFest will be held on Saturday, June 1 from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Williamston’s Mineral Spring Park and will feature a motorcyle ride-in, displays of Police, Fire and EMS vehicles and a program honoring local first responders. Music, food and fun will also be a big part of the event.

On one end of the park there will be live entertainment by the Piedmont Boys beginning at 11 a.m. and the Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle Group will begin entering the town, more than 200 of them, a short time later.

At noon, a program honoring first responders will include comments by Sheriff John Skipper, and presentations by the Spartanburg County Detention Center Drill Team, the Anderson Fire Department Color Guard and a 21 gun salute.

Following the program the Piedmont Boys will play again.

On the other end of the park, in the park’s new Gazebo area along Gossett St., there will be music on an acoustic stage with the Trey Ward Band, West End String Band, Jeremy McCall Band, Angela Easterling with Brandon Turner and Freddie Vanderford and the Slik Nickel Bluegrass group.

Throughout the day and throughout the park there will be food vendors, children’s activities and displays.

A variety of food vendors will offer festival favorites including hot wings, chicken plates, barbecue, nachos, sausage dogs, corn dogs, cheese fries, funnel cakes deep fried Oreos, cotton candy, ice cream and milk shakes.

Children’s activities will include amusement rides and inflatables, and face painting. There will be fire truck rides on the town’s antique fire truck.

There will also be educational displays including a burning house display where kids can experience what a fire may be like and how to escape. There will also be ambulances, firetrucks and police cars on display where children, and adults, can get up close to local first responder vehicles and ask questions about them.

Local businesses will have displays along a Meet & Greet Walkway and the event will include a farmers market with locally grown vegetables and other items available for purchase.

There will be door prizes at both stages.