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Crowds flock to Oktoberfest
Carnival rides light up the night Saturday at the Great Ogeechee Seafood Festival. - photo by Photo by Katie McGurl
Tens of thousands of people converged on J.F. Gregory Park this past weekend for the 12th annual Great Ogeechee Seafood Festival, and festival committee members are lauding the event as a success.
“I think it went great overall,” said festival Chairman Mike Sisco. “We had a really strong crowd on Saturday – it was just packed all day long.”
Entertainment Chairman Janet Thayer agreed the festival went off without a hitch.
“It was a great weekend,” she said. “Everything was good and very easy, everyone had fun … and with the economy, (attendance) was over what we thought it would be.”
While exact attendance totals are not yet tallied, Thayer said, “we do think that we exceeded last year’s numbers.” Roughly 35,000 people visited the 2009 event.
Little River Band headlined the festival, taking the stage on Saturday evening. Their set list included hits like “Cool Change,” “Reminiscing” and “Night Owls.” The crowd danced and sang along as the band’s music brought back decades-old memories.
“I think the crowd responded really well and I think they really enjoyed them,” said Thayer of the performance.
Cartel, a Conyers-based pop-rock group that has garnered national fame, was excited to play the festival.
“It’s great to return to our roots,” said lead singer Will Pugh after the band finished it’s set. “It’s always something we’ve been proud of, and to play something like this is really cool because people genuinely appreciate it.”
Pugh and guitarist Joseph Pepper played an acoustic set and delighted fans by signing autographs after the show.
Awards for best food were given out prior to Saturday’s performances. “Best Dessert” went to Stalvey Concessions; “Best Non-Seafood” went to Chicago Dog and Deli; “Best Seafood” was awarded to Cook’s Choice Catering; and the “People’s Choice” award went to Boy Scout Troop 400 for their famous peach cobbler.
No incidents or altercations requiring police involvement occurred in the park over the three days of the festival, as far as the committee knows.
“Thank you to all of our volunteers, sponsors and everyone in the community who helped put this on,” said Thayer.
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