CHINA GROVE – This year’s Farmers Day will likely remind regular attendees of those early days when families took a look at classic cars during the event’s car show. The annual event is in its 31st year with some new additions and many more traditions.
Organizers are bringing back the classic cars for the first time in a while with the Cruise-In, which will feature cars, trucks, tractors and motorcycles. It’s been a few years since organizers have included a car show in the lineup of activities. The show will have vehicles that are from 1985 and older and will be on display extending into the 400 block of North Main Street near South End barber shop.
“I think the reason a lot of it was space. Now that we have the town hall project complete the show has extended,” said Organizer Amanda Eller.
Eller said barber shop owner Jesse Link asked if the show could be extended to include the block where his business is located. The car show will begin at 9 a.m.
Eller not only wanted the community to enjoy a host of family-friendly activities, but she also felt a need to include a way for people to give back. This year’s event will include a silent auction where all of the proceeds will benefit a first-time scholarship for deserving students at South Rowan and Carson high schools.
“It’s a complete new way for us to raise money for the event and then once we took it to the Board of Trade, they offered to organize it,” Eller said.
Several local auction items came from items donated by local businesses and several Board of Trade members. The items can be bid on at town hall until 3 p.m. Some of the items include a one-year membership to the Forum Fitness, a driving helmet signed by Richard Petty, a gas card, a target from S&S Graham Archery and a gift basket from China Grove Hardware.
“We wanted there to be a purpose for Farmers Day. The Board of Trade was involved and we wanted businesses to be involved,” Eller said.
There are three stages — children’s stage, main stage and the Hannah Park stage where a variety of activities and performances will take place. Burns & Company Magic and Ventriloquism will return this year to the children’s stage.
The activities will again begin with a Friday night concert. The annual “Singing in the Park” event will kick off the Farmers Day activities with this year’s performances by the Edwards Family and Atlantic Groove. The performances begin at 6 p.m. and are expected to last until 11 p.m. The Edwards Family is a local bluegrass family band and Atlantic Groove, a local six-member group that plays a variety of music including beach, funk, R&B, rock and country.
Also new this year will be some early morning Zumba Fitness to get you going. The exercise will begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday on the main stage at Captain’s Galley, 216 S. Main St.
The Saturday event will culminate with the 10 p.m. annual fireworks show.
Also during the event:
• The “Best Tomato Contest,” entries will be taken at the Roller Mill Museum, 308 N. Main St. and registered before 2 p.m. on Farmers Day. The contest will be held on Farmers Day. The first place prize is $50, second place is $30 and the third place winner will receive $20. There are two divisions — adult and youth ages 17 and younger. Tomatoes will be judged on appearance and taste. Participants must submit five tomatoes of the same variety to be judged and they must have been grown in Rowan County. The contest is sponsored by L.L. Goodnight and Sons of China Grove.
• The “Biggest Watermelon Contest,” entries will be accepted at the Farmers Market, 308 N. Main St. from July 20 through Sept. 30. The melons must have been grown in Rowan County. More than one entry per person is allowed. The contest prize is $100 for an adult winner and $100 for a youth winner. The China Grove Farmers Market is open each Friday from 4 p.m.-7 p.m. The contest is sponsored by Goodman Farm Supply Company in China Grove. For more information about the Farmers Market, contact Alan Goodman at 704-857-5938.
• The Roller Mill Museum will be open for visitors from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. In addition to all the original mill equipment, there are artifacts on display dating to the 1800s. The Roller Mill Museum is sponsored by the Historical Society of South Rowan and is located at 308 N. Main St., China Grove.
• Little Mr. and Miss Farmers Day Contest, entries will be accepted until 9:45 a.m. on July 20. The contest ages are infant through two years old and three years old to five years old. The dress is farm attire and the contest will be 10 a.m. at the Hannah Park Stage.
For more information about specific activities visit the China Grove Farmers Day website at http://chinagrovefarmersday.com/
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253. Twitter: www.twitter.com/salpostpotts Facebook: www.facebook.com/Shavonne.SalisburyPost.