Cashie River Fest set for Oct. 25

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 9, 2003

WINDSOR – The Fourth Annual Cashie River Festival planned Saturday, October 25, promises to be the biggest and best ever, with plans that include everything from children’s activities and Irish riverdance to area arts and crafts.

The festival opens with a parade for children from infant to 12 years old who must represent their favorite literary character. Various tents will be set up downtown for ongoing interactive children’s events, with parents invited to join such hands-on projects as art and face painting. A magic show with live animals is planned to inspire awe and allow children to pet animals they may not see in everyday life.

One highlight of the day will be opening of the new Bertie County Arts Council Center on King Street in the former Bertie Ledger-Advance building, which has been empty since it was damaged by flooding in 1999. The newly renovated building will house the arts council and provide its first public office. The council has been operating from an upstairs office at Windsor/Bertie County Chamber of Commerce on York Street. The new office will also provide a site for exhibits/sales of work by area artists and room for a classroom. People who visit the festival are invited to come by the office and pick up a schedule of activities.

Another highlight of the day will be performances by Hunt Family Fiddlers, who bring Irish music and steps in the riverdance style. An art show for all mediums is planned at Martin Community College/Bertie Campus and crafts people will also offer wares for viewing and sale. Artists or crafts persons interested in space or booths should call the council at 794-9402.

The walking tour of historic properties will provide the opportunity for visitors to see old homes and buildings in Windsor. The tours will be self-guided, with spokespeople to talk about buildings at key areas.

Besides arts and crafts for sale, autographed books by former Bertie County resident Taylor Reese will be on sale at the new center. One of his works, &uot;From Here to There – A Boy’s Tale&uot;, tells of growing up on a Bertie County farm before the stock market crash of 1929 and the lean days of the early Thirties. Reese chopped, looped and cured tobacco. He sold Cloverine salve and took piano lessons for 50 cents per week.

One writer said Reese &uot;experienced life on a farm when there was no tractor and farm life was uncomplicated; when a man’s word was his bond; and when prayer in school held no controversy&uot;.

Reese, who lives in Spruce Pine, said he based the book on fact, but fictionalized names to protect the guilty and &uot;because I didn’t want to get shot&uot;.

Other autographed books to be on sale include Reese’s &uot;A Glimpse At Life&uot;, poetry in the four categories of nature, encouragement, humor and miscellany; and two books on humor, &uot;Humor Is Where You Find It- Look No Further&uot; and &uot;Humor and A Little Bit More&uot;. The first conveys writings gathered over the years from where it really happens, in the home, on the road, at a friend’s house or on Main Street. The second book on humor has been compared to writings of Will Rogers about real human beings in small towns.

The first three Cashie River Festivals were held in August, but planners believe festival participants and the public will be more comfortable in cooler weather and this event was planned for October. For more information about Cashie River Festival, call Bertie Arts Council at 794-9402.