This has been updated for the following corrections. In the Oct. 10 issue of The Oconee Enterprise, the fall festival preview article included incorrect information about pony rides and the agribusiness exhibit. There will not be pony rides at the fall festival this year.
Per the agribusiness exhibit, it does not function like a petting zoo, so the animals there are not allowed to be touched.
Now a 45-year-old tradition, the Oconee Chamber Fall Festival will offer over 250 arts and crafts booths in and around Rocket Field in Watkinsville on Saturday, Oct. 19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Julia Estess, director of special events for the Oconee Chamber of Commerce, said that so many vendors applied for the festival that the Chamber had to open a new section for booths on Third Street next to Eagle Tavern. This section will include eight new booths that offer goods such as English toffee, clothing, specialty soda, and favored popcorn.
Amateur historian Maria Caudill will treat families to a historical presentation inside Rocket Hall, where there will also be coloring stations.
The KidZone will be next to the Oconee Cultural Arts Foundation. Included in the zone will be inflatables, bungee jumping, rock climbing and the Oconee Chamber’s agribusiness exhibit.
Oconee State Bank, who is this year’s KidZone sponsor, will have an interactive booth set up in the zone.
The radio station 93.3 will be at the festival again with a live remote broadcast next to Rocket Hall.
In conjunction with the festival, the Keep Oconee Beautiful Commission will present the winner of their Clean, Green, Beautiful Contest. The winner’s design will be enlarged so that it can be painted as a future public art project.
There will be numerous food options available to attendees the day of the festival. Typical eats, such as corn dogs, hamburgers, funnel cakes and boiled peanuts will be available, in addition to Italian ice and gelato, Bubblewaffles with ice cream and Greek cuisine.
The Oconee Farmers Market will also have plenty of take-home food options and even more crafts in front of the Oconee County Courthouse beginning at 8 a.m.
Official fall festival T-shirts will be sold by Big Frog at booth No. 200 on Rocket Field. Local artist Dave Helwig created the artwork for this year’s shirts.
Per the usual, fire rescue and EMS personnel will be on standby at the festival.
Those wondering about parking have a couple of options during the festival. The following lots are available to park in for a small donation:
n Bethel Baptist Church at 59 N. Main St.
n Oconee State Bank at 35 N. Main St.
n Ashford Memorial Methodist Church at 1 S. Main St.
n Handicapped parking will be located at Watkinsville First Christian Church at 4 N. Main St., and donations for handicap parking will be accepted.
Free parking will be offered at the following locations:
n behind the county courthouse
n along North Main Street
n at Harris Shoals Park
n the Southwire plant on Barnett Shoals Road
The North Georgia Two-Cylinder Club will offer free hayrides to and from the festival offered to people who park in the park and plant lots.