As reporter Bill Pearson found out today, the festival is growing and now offers something for everyone.
Vendors spent the day Friday getting ready for The Azalea Festival to fully bloom in Valdosta's Drexel Park on Saturday. And organizers say the event has quickly grown in popularity with everyone involved.
Joanne Griner, the Azalea Festival Chairperson says, its grown each year by the thousands. We hope to have 30,000 here this year. We have more vendors than we ever have before, and we have more rides and participation. We've got extra performances of the circus."
Vendors have seen the event grow, and they say visitors are the real winners, as there is something for everyone.
Becky Hahn, who is managing the rock wall says, "We have the bouncing thing, they have those, and that's good for the younger kids that don't feel comfortable with our rock wall. You've got crafts, food, vendors, you've got all the demonstrations, local dancers, karate, the gymnasts, and that attracts a lot of people. There's the circus. There's something for everyone."
And for the first time ever, this year's Azalea Festival will include music acts from the area.
Shag, a D.J. for Rock 108 says, "We have six bands performing starting at noon, and it’s going to be a great time. A lot of local and regional bands, it’s our first time doing this and we're trying to foster the local, original music scene," helping attract even more people to the beautiful Azalea City.
The Azalea Festival is free and takes place on the front lawn of Valdosta State University and across the street at Drexel Park all day Saturday and again Sunday afternoon.