Second annual Guy Peachfest set for Friday, Saturday

By Tammy Keith Originally Published July 11, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.
Updated July 9, 2013 at 5:16 p.m.
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If it had been the pits last year, Peachfest in Guy probably wouldn’t be having its second annual festival, but the first was a smashing success.

“We had such a good response and turnout last year that we decided to do it again this year,” said Wendy Grimes, festival director.

“In fact, we’ve made it a little bigger,” she said.

New this year are lawnmower races, a skeet shoot, a mini-tractor pull and a pancake breakfast.

Peachfest activities will be held Friday and Saturday, primarily at Guy City Park on Oak Lane and at the adjacent Guy-Perkins High School, off Arkansas 25.

Guy Mayor Johnny Wilson said the idea for the festival had been brought up before, but he presented it to the Guy City Council.

“Tom Henry, the man who owns Cadron Crest

[Orchard], and I sat down and talked about this, and he said, ‘Let’s kick it off.’

“Cadron Crest Orchard up here is a real well-known name for peaches; people come all over to get them,”

Wilson said.

“It’s just one of those things to give back to the community,” Wilson said.

“I can’t say enough about Wendy — she took the ball and ran,” he said.

Grimes, the city’s water and court clerk, said Guy’s population is about 700, and she thought maybe 400 would show up for the first festival.

“I estimate about 1,200 to 1,500 last year; I wanted to be a little more on the conservative side,” she said.

“It was surprising to see the draw of people — one lady drove all the way from Pine Bluff,” Grimes said.

“People kept coming in and coming in.”

Guy Festivals, a nonprofit organization, was created to organize the event, with Grimes as the director.

Peachfest will kick off at 6 p.m. Friday in the gazebo in the Guy City Park with music, focusing on bluegrass and gospel, she said. Entertainment will include Hometown Bluegrass, the Sulphur Road Pickers and Randy Thorn and his group, Soldiers of the Cross, which Grimes said is “more contemporary.”

On Saturday, live music will start at 1 p.m. in the park with Midnight Express.

A rodeo will be held at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, with the gates opening at 6, at Cadron Crest Orchard, north of the school on Arkansas 25.

“We’ve added in some prize money this year,” Grimes said.

Events will begin bright and early Saturday with a pancake breakfast at the school at 6:30 a.m. Registration will be at 6 a.m. for a 7 a.m. 5K run/walk, starting in the school parking lot.

Admission to the festival is free, but some of the events, such as the 5K and poker run, cost money.

“To come in and walk through and listen to the music — all that’s free,” Grimes said.

Other activities include a horseshoe tournament, a skeet shoot, a softball tournament, and kids activities and games.

A parade will start at 9 a.m. Saturday, lining up at the high school “for anybody who wants in it. We’ll have everything from floats to softball teams; our queens will ride in it,” she said.

The Miss Peachfest Festival beauty pageant was held in June.

The Classic Car Show & Shine will also start at 9 a.m. Registration for the poker run will be at 8:30 a.m., and the event begins at 9.

The lawnmower races will start at 11 a.m. and are expected to be a hit, Grimes said.

Radio personality Bob Robbins will participate, she said.

“These lawnmowers — they’re not your average lawnmowers. They’ll run 35 to 40 mph,” Mayor Wilson said.

Food and craft vendors will be open all day.

Events are listed on the Peachfest website, guypeachfest.com.

To show Peachfest pride, T-shirts are available, in neon pink, called “safety” pink, and in gray. The design, a tie-dyed peach wearing sunglasses and tennis shoes, was created by Sammy Acosta of Guy, Grimes said.

“They turned out really nice,” she said.

Names of sponsors will be listed on the back of the shirt, Grimes said.

Those can be purchased at City Hall or at the festival.

Peaches, of course, are the point of the festival.

“I’m partial to the cook-off myself,” Grimes said.

Categories being judged are peach pies, peach fried pies, peach cobbler and peach jam or jelly.

Entries must be there by noon, Grimes said.

“Last year, we were a little disappointed. With the heat the way it was, the peaches had come off earlier,” she said. “They assured me this year there’s going to be an abundance of peaches.”

Grimes said the items are made for the contest, not to sell.

“The top winner in each category — not only do they get a ribbon; we did aprons with the T-shirt logo on them,” she said. “With the design this year, it really pops.”

Speaking of popping, Peachfest will end with a bang on Saturday with a fireworks display at 9 p.m.

For more information, call Guy City Hall at (501) 679-4585.

Senior writer Tammy Keith can be reached at (501) 327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

Niche Publications Senior Writer Tammy Keith can be reached at 501-327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

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