Ole Brook Festival ‘coming to town’ for two days of fun

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, August 15, 2000

The 26th Ole Brook Festival returns to the downtown area thisOctober for the annual event’s weekend of shopping andentertainment.

After several years at the Brookhaven Sports Complex, vendorbooths this year will line Whitworth Avenue and West CherokeeStreet during the Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6-7, event. With thefestival downtown, Ole Brook Chairman John Chance said it will beeasier to find and give festival-goers other shopping options.

“A lot of downtown merchants can really benefit from having thatmany people walk in front of their businesses,” Chance said.

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Previous downtown area festival locations included the WhitworthCollege campus and Brookhaven Elementary School. While space orother factors limited the festival from being held in those places,Chance said having the festival in downtown gives merchants anotherchance to market themselves to shoppers.

“It’s a chance to bring some added attention to downtown,”Chance said.

Kay Burton, program director for the chamber of commerce, washopeful the new location will be good for vendors as well.

“We hope it will attract a lot more vendors,” Burton said.

Chance said festival plans have received an “excellent” responsefrom downtown merchants, some of whom plan to set up shop on thestreet during the event.

Anyone interested in having a booth at the festival isencouraged to contact the chamber of commerce. Chance added thatfood booths will be limited to non-profit organizations.

The Whitworth campus will be utilized this year with a Fridaynight gospel singing at Lampton Auditorium, Chance said.

Also Friday night, the Bluz Boys will be in concert in RailroadPark, and a street party is planned in conjunction with theshow.

Other attractions this year include musical entertainmentthroughout the day Saturday, an antique vehicles, tractor andengine display, King’s Daughters Medical Center Health Fair andhorse-drawn carriage rides through the city’s Victorian District.Chance said the carriage rides were a popular attraction earlierthis year during the Tour of Homes.

Returning this year with an added twist is the Pork-Beef-ChickenCook-Off. This year, festival organizers have added chili to thecompetition list.

“We’ll see who’s got the best and the hottest,” Chance said.

Chance said the festival was fortunate to have CellularSouth-Ericsson as a sponsor. He said festival organizers werelining up other sponsors, including State Bank, Bank of Brookhaven,First Bank and BellSouth.

Chance was looking forward to a successful festival in its newlocation.

“We think it’s going to be good,” Chance said.