03/23/11 — Daffodil Preview

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Daffodil Preview

By Gary Popp
Published in News on March 23, 2011 2:24 PM

FREMONT -- The town of Fremont will hold its 25th annual Daffodil Festival Saturday, featuring entertainment by the classic beach music band The Embers.

Organizers are expecting more than 50 vendors at the event, which will feature games, arts and crafts, and of course, all kinds of food. The festival will begin on Main Street at 10 a.m. and run until 5 p.m.

The event actually will start Friday evening, with a "Special 25th Anniversary Bash," from 7 to 9 p.m. at Fremont STARS Elementary School. Master of ceremonies will be John Brown of John Brown's Plowology. He will provide entertainment, along with previous winners of the annual Miss Daffodil and Little Miss Daffodil pageants.

Festival organizer Brenda Paul said town officials are expecting nearly 10,000 people to attend if the weather remains nice.

"It is our main event for the year. It is a day that everyone can come out and enjoy all the important things in a small community that we take a lot of pride in," Mrs. Paul said.

Mrs. Paul said the festival always includes a mix of area residents, people who grew up in Fremont but moved away and make the trip home to see family and friends.

She noted that festival organizers have decided to limit vendors to only those who offer handmade items. Mass-produced trinkets are banned.

Not only are the works of art required to be handcrafted, organizers make an effort to keep the selection limited to crafts by local artists.

"A lot of our arts vendors take great pride in the crafts that they sell," Mrs. Paul said.

Mrs. Paul said the festival will feature arts and crafts created by artists from Fremont, Pikeville, Goldsboro, Mount Olive, Wilson, Benson and Fuquay-Varina. She added that organizers strive to provide a wide variety of crafts to accommodate the interest of almost any festivalgoer. They include pottery, woodwork, jewelry, embroidered fabrics, wreaths, handpainted plates, key chains and tie-dye clothing.

There is, however, no limit on the types of food available.

Treats range from barbecue and barbecue chicken to ice cream, shaved ice, homemade applejacks, kielbasa sausages, Philly cheesesteaks, funnel cakes, cotton candy, hot dogs, smoked turkey legs and corn on the cob.

"We have a lot of local non-profit organizations doing bake sales and commercial food vendors," Mrs. Paul said.

The festival will also offer a special area for youngsters, Children's Alley, which will feature inflatables, face painting and other interactive games.

The Fremont Garden Club will sponsor a daffodil exhibit in the Town Hall, which will allow the festival patrons to enjoy a tribute to the flower that gives the festival its name.

Mrs. Paul said getting ready for the festival has been a team effort.

"Our town employees, police department and community members do a lot of work leading up to the festival to get the town prepared."