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Local artist and graphic designer Mike Merritt of Blue-J Customs is busy recreating an old Smith Buggy Company ad (right) as a mural on one of the last remaining Smith’s shop buildings on Zebulon Street in Barnesville. Jonathan Anderson of McJotta Holdings has bought the building and several others and is breathing new life back into some of downtown’s tired facades. The mural should be finished by Buggy Days weekend. (Photo: Walter Geiger)

Buggy Days are here again

The 49th annual Buggy Days Festival kicks off this weekend with the annual Miss Buggy Days Pageant at the Fine Arts Center. Registration for pageant entrants has closed.

The main event week begins Tuesday, Sept. 12 with the return of Almost Anything Goes, a series of games pitting local teams against each other. The event starts at 6 p.m. at Summers Field Park.

The official festival kickoff party will be held Thursday, Sept. 14 at Mangia on Main from 7-10 p.m.

The big weekend gets underway at 8 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 16 with the Buggython Road Race. There will be certified 5K and 10K road races and a two mile fun walk.

Early registration (postmarked by Sept. 6) fees are $20 for those 13 and over, $15 for those under 13 and $10 for the fun walk. After the early registration deadline, those fees go to $25, $20 and $10.

Sponsors are still being sought for the road race which will benefit the recreation department and Boys & Girls Club. For more information, contact Kathryn Green at 678.572.7723.

The traditional arts and crafts fair opens downtown at 9 a.m. and runs through 6 p.m. Saturday and noon-5 p.m. on Sunday.

The Buggy Blast Kids Park will be open from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday and noon – 5 p.m. Sunday in the United Bank parking lot. During those same hours and across the street in the Stafford Block parking lot there will be an area cordoned off for gellyball games and axe throwing.

A new venue this year is the special events area in front of the old B&L convenience store building at the corner of Taylor Street and College Drive. That area will host the car show from 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Saturday and a corn hole tournament from 6-9 p.m. Saturday.

The Buggy Days parade will form up at the Gordon College parking lots of College Drive and hit the usual course at 2 p.m.

Soundwave, a musical extravaganza featuring multiple local acts, will be held Saturday evening at Summers Field Park. Attendees will have a front row seat for the fireworks show. Fuses will be lit at 9:30 p.m.

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