NICKELSVILLE — It’s the beginning of summer, and that can only mean one thing in Scott County — the return of the annual Nickelsville Days festival.
The festival, which is entering its 19th year of existence, will be held Friday evening and all day Saturday at Keith Memorial Park on Highway 71 in Nickelsville.
Organizers with the Nickelsville Planning Commission said they are hoping to improve on last year’s attendance by adding two nights of music and other new twists to the festival.
“Last year we had a record crowd — probably the biggest one we’ve ever had,” Nickelsville Planning Commission Chairman Jack Troutman said. “We’re anticipating another good turnout. We’ve had a lot of calls and interest from people, and from businesses that want to participate, so we’re looking forward to a really good festival again.”
Troutman said the event is held to celebrate Nickelsville and give attendees a chance to experience the best a small town has to offer.
“It’s all about having a good time and a lot of fun. Nickelsville isn’t a very big town, but it really swells during this weekend,” Troutman said. “We try to offer as much as we possibly can. ... Everyone can just sit back, relax and enjoy the good music and good food. We just want people to come out and have a lot of fun and be safe.”
The 2012 festival will kick off Friday at 4 p.m. with free kids rides and bungee jumping at 5 p.m.
Musical performances will begin Friday at 6 p.m. with gospel music by singer Michael Wayne Smith, followed by a performance by Daisy Rain at 8 p.m.
On Saturday, the festival begins with a breakfast from 7 until 10 a.m. at the Eastern Star restaurant.
The Nickelsville Days Parade will begin at 11 a.m. with former school board member Joe Meade, who died in March, being named its grand marshal in memoriam.
“Joe loved his town and community and was instrumental in helping to get the Keith Memorial Park constructed where we hold our Nickelsville Days celebration,” Troutman said.
Other events Saturday include a baseball game at 1 p.m. followed by a cornhole tournament at 2 p.m.
Cloggers will also perform on the Nickelsville Days Main Stage at 2 p.m. That performance will be followed by the “Nickelsville’s Got Talent” contest.
Magician Joe Young will perform at the amphitheater at 5 p.m.
Musical performances Saturday night include the Scott County Boys at 6 p.m. and Carl Price and Yesterday’s Express at 8 p.m.
In addition to those activities, Troutman said festival-goers will also have chances to win door prizes ranging from restaurant gift certificates to tickets for Tweetsie Railroad in Boone, N.C. and even cash.
For more information, visit explorescottcountyva.com.