ParkFest honors first responders; offers music, food and fun – June 1


The Town of Williamston will be bustling with activity this Saturday when a new event called “ParkFest – A Heros Celebration” kicks off at 11 a.m.

The new festival event will feature music by the Piedmont Boys beginning at 11 a.m. followed by a special program honoring first responders including police, fire and EMS at 12 noon.

The Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle Group will create a roar when approximately 200 motorcycles ride into town at approximately 11:30 am.

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 have a second set of music which according to their website features their own brand of country music which is influenced by outlaw, bluegrass, southern rock and blues music.

The Piedmont Boys, hailing from Greenville, are Greg Payne (front man), Adam Whitehead (guitar), Chief Spires (bass), Matt Parks (fiddle) and John Taylor (drums). Together the group has produced three studio albums and average over 200 shows per year across the country.

While the Piedmont Boys are entertaining on the Amphitheater Main Stage, in the other end of the park where the new Gazebo is located 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.

There will be door prizes at both stages including a drawing for a big screen TV at one stage and a $500 cash prize at the other.

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, inflatables and face painting. The Williamston Fire Department will offer 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 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 what first responders do.

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.

Farmers Market vendors will be there from 8a.m. until early afternoon with a variety of locally grown and locally produced items, including beef, soap, all-natural insect repellant, herb and vegetable plants, honey, aprons, and hats.

Williamston Police officers will be at the pedestrian crosswalks at McDonalds and the fire department to help people across Main Street.

The Defenders Motorcycle Club is a Law Enforcement Motorcycle club that includes First Responders and like minded civilians.

The Defenders MC was started in June 2004 in Naples, Florida. Members are active and retired members of Law Enforcement, Military, Emergency Services and Public Safety professions, who along with a select group of citizenry, possess the highest moral and ethical values, uncompromised integrity and time honored dedication to the preservation of truth, justice, and the American way!

The club was founded by like minded individuals with a vision of friendship and brotherhood that has grown into a national organization in only six years, and a reputation that precedes all who wear its colors.

The local chapter participating in ParkFest and the national organization convey an image of integrity and set the standard for others to follow.

Only those who possess the highest moral and ethical values, uncompromised integrity and character are allowed to join the Defenders Motorcycle Club.

For more information visit their national website at

ParkFest organizers Jack Ellenburg and Nancy Carroll are coordinating the event with the Defenders Club and the Town of Williamston.