ParkFest turnout not as expected

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Although turnout for a new festival type event called “ParkFest – A Heros Celebration” was not what organizers expected, those who did attend were treated to a first class recognition program for local first responders along with music, fun and food. Mayor Mack Durham, who encouraged the event as part of his plan to bring more festivals and activities to the town said he thought the event went good for a first time event planned on a short timeline. “It was a good first year event,” he said. “The first responders were happy with the recognition.”

Durham said honoring first responders was honoring people “who are the heart of our community.”

He said the displays and demonstrations at the event were very informative.

Estimates were that fewer than 500 people attended the event which included a full day of activities beginning at 11 a.m. and ending at 7:30 p.m.

Williamston Police Chief Tony Taylor said the event went “very well” with no problems or incidents.

The event featured a ride-in by members of the Defenders Law Enforcement Motorcycle Group and a special program honoring first responders including police, fire and EMS.

The program included remarks by Anderson County Sheriff John Skipper and presentations by the Spartanburg County Detention Center Drill Team, the Anderson Fire Department Color Guard and a 21 gun salute.

The Piedmont Boys provided music on the Amphitheater Main Stage until about mid day when the focus shifted to an acoustic stage at the other end of the park.

Several hundred people enjoyed the entertainment there which featured the Trey Ward Band, West End String Band, Jeremy McCall Band, Angela Easterling and Slik Nickel.

ParkFest co-organizers Jack Ellenburg and Nancy Carroll coordinated the event with the Defenders Motorcycle Club and the Town of Williamston.