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VFDs plan to ‘Fall on the Pearl’

Fall is in the air for the next few months, but specifically on the Pearl River Oct. 6.

Fall on the Pearl is a free community event that’s not quite a festival, but more than just a concert and food, said Lawrence County Fire Coordinator Jared Evans.

It starts that morning at the Atwood Water Park in Monticello with firefighter training that is open for the public to watch and see what it takes to become a volunteer firefighter.

“The hope is, maybe people will come there and see what’s going on and it may encourage them to join,” Evans said.

Plus, training is usually done on weekends in locations that aren’t open to the firefighters’ families.

“This is an opportunity for us to have a training at a location where families can come, too,” he said.

Besides the children’s park at Atwood, a kids inflatable play area will be set up with armbands for sale for just a few dollars each, he said.

A food vendor will open around lunchtime and families are welcome to bring their own grills and nibbles.

“Bring your barbecue grill and throw your food on it,” he said.

Crafts vendors are welcome to set up with no charge to participate. Just register with Evans before the event by calling 601-320-4606. There will be a charge by the city for anyone who needs electricity for a booth, he said.

The Atwood Music Festival committee is hosting a Super Hero 5K and Fun Run with registration at noon.

Costumes depicting super heroes or local heroes are encouraged, said Leigh Ann Reeves, executive assistant for the Lawrence County Community Development Association.

The fun run for children age 8 and younger will have a firefighter theme with an obstacle course.

Registration for the 5K before Oct. 6 is $25, which includes a T-shirt and hydration station. It’s $30 on the day of the event.

Cost for children 12 and under who want to participate in the 5K is $15.

Registration for the fun run is $10 with a T-shirt.

To register for any of the races, call 601-587-3007 or visit the Atwood Music Festival Facebook page. Registration is accepted on the day of the races at the set-up table located next to the stage.

Music is set to begin at 5 p.m.  Already scheduled are Wichita, Michael McCall & Band and The Brothers Quartet.

Bands interested in participating are asked to call Evans for information.

Evans said the Lawrence County volunteer firefighters usually have an awards banquet each year, but decided to try something different this year. That idea gave way to Fall on the Pearl, a festival-like community event with music, food, crafts, activities and firefighters and their families available to answer questions about the fire departments and volunteer opportunities.

“We decided to do something for us, but invite the community, too,” Evans said. “It’s kind of like a festival, but not. It’s a way to say, ‘Thank you’ for all they do all through the year.”

Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets and come enjoy a fall day at the river. Music is expected to continue until about 11 p.m., he said.