BURGAW—This weekend, Pender County’s Courthouse Square in Burgaw will fill with more than an estimated 30,000 people for the 15th annual NC Blueberry Festival.
The two-day festival features live music, free activities, and of course, all things blueberry.
RELATED: Your guide to all summer 2018 concert series in the Cape Fear Region
Olivia Dawson, coordinator for the NC Blueberry Festival, said the event is a way for people outside the area to see what Burgaw and Pender County are all about.
“The Blueberry Festival is a great 15-year tradition,” Dawson said. “It shows off our great town of Burgaw, our great county of Pender and the southern hospitality we have to offer.”
Over 150 arts and craft vendors will line Pender County’s Courthouse Square on Friday and Saturday, June 15 and 16.
“We have more activities on Friday than we’ve had in the past,” Dawson said. From 6 a.m. Friday through 10 p.m. Saturday, there will always be something going on in historic downtown Burgaw.
“On Sunday, you wouldn’t even notice there was a festival out there,” Dawson.
All scheduled events can be accessed online. Below are five popular events:
Take a step back in time at the NC Blueberry Festival’s car show. The show features vehicles from the 20th century, including “all classes of cars and trucks.”
Tickets are $25, available online and in person during the event. The event begins at 9 a.m. when the festival opens and awards will be given at 3 p.m.
There will be no shortage of blueberry treats at the festival’s recipe contest. “Those recipes range from blueberry tea to blueberry salsa,” Dawson said.
Participants will offer “any recipe dish you can create doing blueberries” in the contest’s appetizer, entree, dessert and jam categories Friday. Beginning at 9 a.m. at the Burgaw Community House, contestants will bring prepared dishes that will be judged between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
BMX stunt show
Former X Games competitor Keith King will be sky bound Saturday in Burgaw. King runs King BMX, an entertainment offering will showings at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 16.
A meet and greet will be held throughout the day with King at 100 South Dickerson Street in Burgaw.
5K run and 1-mile walk
At 7 a.m. Saturday, June, 16, hundreds of people will line up in downtown Burgaw for the NC Blueberry Festival’s 5K run and 1-mile walk. Whether participants walk or run, the event is a way to get exercise and enjoy Burgaw’s small-town feel, according to event organizers.
“It’s always a big turnout,” Dawson said. Registration is available online and packet pickup begins at 6:15 a.m.
Whole Hog Barbecue Series
A North Carolina Blueberry Festival tradition, entire pigs will be cooked with wood, charcoal or gas in the Whole Hog Barbecue Series. Contestants will supply the barbecue, sauce included. Judging begins at 5 p.m. Friday and barbecue will be served to festival attendees in sandwiches or as barbecue by the pound for the duration of the festival.
More information on the 15th annual event is available on NC Blueberry Festival’s website.
Send tips to Johanna Ferebee at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow Johanna on Twitter @j__ferebee