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Buggy Days: ‘Community benefitted’; move to Summers Field Park under consideration

The 46th annual Buggy Days in is the books after a weekend of excellent fall weather and good crowds in attendance at most events. Saturday’s parade went off without a hitch and Barnesville police chief Craig Cooper credited his officers, sheriff’s deputies, countless volunteers and considerate attendees for making that happen. Saturday’s crowd was at its thickest during the parade and, though it was not the largest in the event’s long history, it was very good and better than in recent years. The parade was long with many units, including a resurgence in the number of carriages and wagons and the usual bevy of beauty queens. Crafters and food vendors reported excellent sales on Saturday and better than average results on Sunday. ‘By 2 p.m. Saturday, the cattleman’s association had sold more prime rib sandwiches than they did all weekend in previous years. I got similar remarks from all the other food vendors which were all local organizations,’ chairman Dick Esco said. The demise of the pig chase was very evident at Satrurday night’s event at the rodeo arena area on Roberta Drive. Attendance was light at the street dance but many cars parked there and at nearby businesses to watch the fireworks display. With no pig chase, the street dance was moved to Saturday night from the traditional Friday night. The location was changed to Roberta Drive from Ritz Park to accommodate the fireworks. Low attendance will add more momentum to move Buggy Days and BBQ & Blues to Summers Field Park – a move which would centralize all events but has been resisted by the City of Barnesville. There was an uproar when attendees arrived at the kids park downtown to find the price of admission was $20 rather than $10 as advertised. ‘That was a surprise to us and will be addressed in the future with a signed contract,’ Esco said. The window decoration contest winners were Deraney’s Two City Tavern, first place; Salon on Main, second place; and Brenda’s Pet Services, third place. ’Our community benefitted from Buggy Days. We learned a lot. Every crafter and vendor got a critique sheet seeking feedback,’ noted Esco, who came out of retirement to chair the festival this year for a desperate chamber board. ‘In the future, I will assist. I will help them train someone. I’m just too old to do all that running around. It takes a lot of running.’

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