Fun, food and fish on tap at fest

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 18, 1999

VIDALIA, La. – The old courthouse in Vidalia will be the site of eight hours of music, food and fun today as the town holds its 11th annual Jim Bowie Festival.

Highlights will include two music stages; a domino tournament; booths with games, food and merchandise; and a reenactment of an 1827 knife duel on a involving Bowie that, according to legend, happened on a nearby sandbar.

&uot;The weather’s looking great … and we’re expecting a good crowd,&uot;&160;said Cliff Merritt, Festival Committee chairman. The DARE Youth Fishing Tournament will begin at 6:30 a.m. on nearby lakes, with weigh-ins starting at 11 a.m. and prizes handed out at 1 p.m.

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A street dance sponsored by the Vidalia Women’s Club will be held from 8 p.m. to midnight with music by Easy Eddie and the Partyrockers.

Streets that will be blocked off from 8 a.m. to midnight include Oak and Spruce streets from Texas Street to Carter Street and Texas from Oak to Spruce, said Police Chief Billy Hammers.

&uot;And we’ll have officers on site to make sure everything goes smoothly,&uot; Hammers said.

For the first time, the festival will feature two stages for musical acts – one for country and gospel music and one for rock and Cajun acts. As in past years, the festival will also feature booths with crafts like jewelry, woodwork and ceramics for sale and food ranging from jambalaya and hamburgers to barbecue sandwiches.

And there will be activities for all ages, including face painting, a &uot;go fish&uot;&160;booth, ring tosses, cake walks, dart throws, dunking booths, car smashes, hole-in-one golf and a spacewalk.

Twenty-five local businesses and the City of Vidalia, Sheriff Randy Maxwell and state Rep. Bryant Hammett are sponsoring this year’s festival.