Thirteenth Annual Azalea Festival Kicks Off in Valdosta

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By: Eames Yates
March 9, 2013

Valdosta, GA.- Gator Tail, a tiger, homemade ice cream and a lot more made Valdosta's thirteenth annual Azalea Festival a hit in Drexel Park.

Festival attendee Susan Jenkins said "you couldn't have asked for a better day, as you can see by crowds out here, it's beautiful."

Another festival attendee L.C. Copeland said "it turned out very nice. Last week it was just cold and rainy and today is a beautiful day."

One kid said their was "thirty million" people at the festival. That number may be a little generous, but festival organizers say this year's festival is on track to surpass the twenty thousand visitors that came last year.

Joanne Griner is the Azalea Festival founder. She said "I think it would be an easy thirty thousand this year over the two days. Because as you can see they're stepping all over each other."

The crowds were indeed thick. Attendees got more than just food and rides.

Carolyn Lipscomb of Adventist Community Services said "we are providing a free health screening program. We're taking blood pressures."

Gretchen Quarterman is with the Lowndes County Democratic Party. She said "we're registering voters. It's always important for people to update their address when they move. So even though we're not in election season right now, we want to make sure that everybody is qualified to vote."

In total there were roughly 160 different vendors. The festival is also on Sunday March 10. It is free and open to the public.

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