Reelfoot to host arts, crafts fest this weekend
Posted: Monday, September 29, 2008 10:17 pm
When a tent city emerges later this week on the banks of Reelfoot Lake, visitors to the area will know it is once again time for the annual Reelfoot Arts & Crafts Festival.
The 37th annual festival — set for Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily — also marks “old home week” for a lot of local people, according to Anna Crocker, secretary/treasurer of the non-profit Reelfoot Arts and Crafts Association.
“Relatives and friends choose to visit this weekend so they can take in the craft show and see old friends there that they haven’t seen since last year,” Ms. Crocker said. “It’s the biggest weekend of the year around the lake for the motels, campgrounds and restaurants.”
Ms. Crocker said festival organizers are expecting almost 300 exhibitors with everything from handmade duck calls, wildlife photography and chainsaw carving to blown-glass jewelry, floral arrangements, handmade baskets, Christmas ornaments and much more.
Vendors will showcase their wares in outdoor booths all along the highway in the Blue Bank area of Reelfoot Lake, as well as indoors at booths in Ellington Assembly Hall, the National Guard armory building and the American Legion building.
Ms. Crocker said visitors to the festival will also be able to sample all kinds of food, including barbecue, roasted corn, fried pies, funnel cakes, kettle popcorn, roasted nuts, hamburgers, hot dogs, fudge and a lot more.
“If that’s not enough, you may visit one of the great fish, chicken and country ham restaurants close by,” she said.
Old-time string music performed by musicians from both near and far will also be featured every day during the three-day event.
Admission to the festival is free, with no pets allowed, and there will be some free parking available. For more information, call Ms. Crocker at 885-7295 or visit the Web site www.reelfoot artsandcrafts.com.
The Reelfoot Arts & Crafts Festival is always held the first weekend that includes an October date and annually attracts crowds of 40,000 people or more, according to organizers, who also said the event has been chosen as one of the top three arts and crafts shows in Tennessee.
During the festival, volunteers from Beulah Baptist Association — comprised of Southern Baptist churches in Obion, Lake and a portion of Weakley counties — will continue their long-standing ministry to the arts and crafts festival vendors by delivering a free “brunch” to their booths Friday and Saturday and by conducting a church service, preceded by a breakfast of sausage and biscuits, early Sunday morning beneath a large tent near Ellington Assembly Hall.