FREMONT -- A gaggle of children jumped up and down in the middle of Main Street trying to catch bubbles as they floated out from Shari Stewart's bubble-making machine Saturday.
Peyton Grantham, 4, caught a few -- she attends Fremont Methodist Preschool, for which Stuart was working the booth at Fremont's 31st annual Daffodil Festival.
Decked out in sunglasses, Grantham was only one of many children that wanted to snag a bubble for herself in the perfect weather.
Many other children would jump or leap into the stream of bubbles and let them pop on their faces, or clap their hands together as the bubbles got close to them and pop them in their palms.
Her mother, Ashley Grantham, said Peyton attends the preschool and it was her first time coming to the festival.
Grantham said the preschool having a booth there brought them out, as well as the many varieties of fair-foods.
Clear skies hung overhead and the sun kissed the thousands of people who came out to welcome the turn of the season with the weekend festivities.
The sound of live music and performances crept into everyone's ears as it reverberated off the building walls of downtown Fremont.
For Kevin Sevigny and his son, Isaac, the festival was a first.
Sevigny said his family lives in Kenly, and the festival was reminiscent of parades they have there.
"It's a nice deal out here," Sevigny said. "It's a nice setup. The weather is perfect."
Vendor booths and attractions of all sorts lined the town's Main, Sycamore and Goldsboro streets.
A boy with Fremont Cub Scouts Pack 12 hawked tickets for a raffle, while others shouted for people to come and get pork chops or try all manner of fair foods, from fried chicken skins to funnel cakes.
Among the vendors were face-painting, bird feeders made out of upturned liquor bottles, contraptions and creations made of horseshoes, beekeepers educating people on the ins and outs of hives and more.
One attraction, put on by Jeff Wilborn of True Race Productions, quickly became a family favorite.
Children and their parents stood on step stools and overlooked a track with remote-controlled NASCAR replica cars.
As many as six people at a time could compete and try to be the fastest car on the track.
Jeff Bailey and his son, Samuel, have been coming to the festival from Nahunta for about four years.
They raced cars against each other, and Bailey said he is part of Fremont Emergency Services, which also had a booth at the festival.
The Baileys were some of the first to try their hand at the remote controlled racing track, but many were quick to follow.
Wilborn said True Race Productions has been in business for 20 years, and it was their 19th year at the festival.
He said he enjoys bringing the track and cars down to Fremont because it is an activity for the entire family to enjoy.
Wilborn said he will often have grandparents, parents and children all racing together at the same time.
"It's just something families can do for good, wholesome fun," Wilborn said.
Behind the track, tucked into a grassy field, was a kids area with a bounce house, inflatables, a 40-foot obstacle course, a dunking booth and more.
Police Chief Paul Moats took a turn in the booth, with many children running up and pressing the button to dunk him even if they didn't hit it with a baseball or softball.
As the day pressed on and the temperature rose into the mid-70s -- a departure from heavy rains on Friday -- people flocked to the streets to take in the various festivities and live performances.
The Embers played on a stage set on Sycamore Street from noon to 2 p.m., drawing a large crowd of revelers who danced the day away to the beach music coming from the band's instruments.
The festival ran until 5 p.m. Saturday.
It is called the Daffodil Festival because of a 1958 News & Observer article on the town's daffodil gardens penned by Bugs Berriger, in which he dubbed Fremont "The Daffodil Town."
The festival started in 1986 as a way to celebrate the onset of spring and the blooming of the yellow flower the town is known for.
"It's nice to see everyone out here all community-like and enjoying themselves and being together," Sevigny said.