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Navigating the Carolinas: Fayetteville Dogwood Festival

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Mindy Bloem
  • 43rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Many opportunities are available this spring to Pope members who are looking to get off base to enjoy some of the local advantages the community offers. 

North Carolina's city of Fayetteville hosts its annual Dogwood Festival downtown April 25 through April 27. 

The Dogwood Festival is a free and open to the public city-sponsored event that will mark its 26 year return at 7 p.m. April 25 with its first-ever "Bloom and Boom kickoff Party." 

The event's kickoff party will feature a performance by national headliner Eddie Money. The night will finish with a firework show. 

The three-day street festival boasts a wide variety of activities for people of all ages.
More than 100 arts and crafts vendors will line the streets selling items such as pottery, paintings, jewelry, sculptures and more. 

Some of the festival's favorite foods (gyros, funnel cakes, ice cream, ribbon fries, and pineapple chicken) will be on hand once again for customers to enjoy. 

Individuals attending the festival should not forget to visit the many sponsor booths which will have cash and prize giveaways. 

"The city of Fayetteville has really stepped up to the plate and given back to us 100 percent," said Carrie King, executive director for the festival during a media conference Tuesday. 

There will be plenty of musical talent throughout the weekend as local and national musicians perform at various times on the Festival Park stage. The local musicians are Joyner, Young & Marie, DL Token and In That Tone. The regional performers are Swampdawamp, Hot Sauce, and Rough Draft. The National headliners are Eddie Money and Vanessa Carlton. 

In addition to activities for adults, the festival provides activities for children to enjoy as well. 

The Partnership's KidStuff, presented by the Partnership for Children of Cumberland County, features a sea lion splash show, a new toddler zone complete with a castle maze made up of inflatable tubes for the children to crawl through, face painting, interactive games and more. The children's area is open April 26 from noon to 7 p.m., and April 27 from 1 to 6 p.m. 

The 2007 Dogwood Festival was recognized by the Southeast Tourism Society as a Top 20 event in the Southeast. 

Downtown parking will be available at the Systel Parking lot for $5 a day and there is free parking in city lots on Person Street and Hay Streets and at other downtown locations.
Free off site shuttle service is available at the Department of Social Services building on Ramsey Street. The shuttle service is free and runs every 15 minutes to take people to the festival footprint. Hours of operation are April 26 from 3 to 11 p.m. and April 27 from 1 to 6 p.m. 

Handicapped parking will be located in the Amtrak Parking Lot on Hay Street. There will also be 50 spots available on Green Street at the Systel Parking Lot. Availability is first come, first serve. 

"We are very excited about what 2008 has in store and we hope you will join us as we grow and continue to become one of the largest festivals in the Southeast," said Ms. King. 

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