Get Down Downtown to celebrate 10th year

By Kayla Baugh Published September 17, 2017 at 12:00 a.m.
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Matt Johnson

Main Street Searcy board members, from left, Amy Burton, James Carson and Paige Norman prepare for Searcy’s 10th annual Get Down Downtown festival Sept. 29 and 30. The festival will take place in downtown Searcy and feature live music, food, activities for children, vendors and more.

— Food, live entertainment, pony rides, vendors, classic cars and a petting zoo — Get Down Downtown has it all.

Searcy’s staple festival will celebrate its 10th year of bringing friends and family together from 6-9:30 p.m. Sept. 29 and from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sept. 30.

The festival will take place in the downtown area, she said, including the Courthouse Square, Spring Street and Spring Park.

Amy Burton, executive director of Main Street Searcy, said the festival draws a crowd every year.

“After 10 years, I’ve had the good fortune of making friends with the vendors, visitors and volunteers who work so hard every year to make the event a success,” she said.

According to a press release from Burton, a wide variety of live entertainment will be available throughout the festival on the First Security Bank stage on the east side of the Courthouse Square.

On Friday, performers include Jason Colemen and Brent Blakely at 6 p.m., Dane Joneshill at 7 p.m. and The Coasts at 8 p.m.

On Saturday, scheduled performers are Jill Baker Wheeler and the Freedom Warriors Riding Association for the national anthem and flag-raising at 10 a.m., Mr. Morphis at 10:30 a.m., Breaking Chains at 11:30 a.m., Justin Shaw at 12:30 p.m., The Kolton Thomas Band at 1:30 p.m., the Crowley Ridge Cloggers at 2:30 p.m., Dara Niemi at 5:30 p.m., Charlotte Taylor & Gypsy Rain at 6:30 p.m. and Little Texas at 8 p.m.

On the Unity Health stage at the Spring Park pavilion on Saturday, performers include the Searcy High School Choir at 10 a.m., Valley Baptist H20 at 10:30 a.m., 4 Mile Hill Taekwondo at 11 a.m., the Harding Academy Band and Choir at 11:30 a.m., the Ahlf Junior High School and Searcy High School cheerleaders and Lionsteppers at noon, Irby Dance Studio at 12:30 p.m., Mr. Morphis at 1 p.m., the White County Central choirs at 2 p.m., the Mount Pleasant Missionary Baptist Youth Choir at 2:30 p.m.; 4 Mile Hill Taekwondo at 3 p.m. and the Rhythm Rockers at 3:30 p.m.

Burton said admission to the festival is free, but vendors will sell handmade jewelry, cosmetics, clothes and more.

Food vendors will give festivalgoers plenty to choose from, she said, including corn dogs, barbecue, funnel cakes, hamburgers, Mexican food, catfish and Cajun food.

The Unity Health Kid Zone at Spring Park will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 30 and feature face-painting, a free petting zoo, $5 pony rides, inflatables, carnival games and other activities.

On Sept. 30, train rides and mini golf will be available in the Spring Street parking lot, the press release states, and the Searcy Fire Department will be set up with fire-safety activities for children along Pleasure Street.

“Concerts are free, and inflatables and several kids activities are free, thanks to our sponsors,” Burton said.

She said a four-wheeler raffle will also take place to raise money for Main Street Searcy.

Tickets can be purchased at the Main Street Searcy office before the festival or at the organization’s booth near the First Security Bank stage at the event.

The winner will be announced Saturday night, she said.

“I grew up in Searcy but lived in other areas of Arkansas and in Missouri for several years,” Burton said. “I was given the opportunity to come back to my hometown, and now I’m raising my children here. I’m proud to be a part of the Main Street Searcy program and want to be a part of the memories being made in Searcy.”

Jason Barnett, a volunteer, said he looks forward to seeing the community come together for Get Down Downtown.

Barnett will coordinate this year’s Classic Car Cruise-In at 6 p.m. Sept. 29 in the Pleasure Street parking lot across from the Searcy Public Library.

The cruise-in will allow classic car and truck owners to meet, show off their vehicles and socialize, he said.

Burton said there is no entry fee or registration required to participate.

Barnett said he owns a towing company and auto salvage yard in Searcy, and he has volunteered at the festival for several years.

The event gives people an opportunity to visit with vendors, friends and family in the historic downtown community, he said.

“Searcy is a small town, crime is low, and it’s just home to us. It’s a great place to raise your kids,” Barnett said.

For more information or to purchase raffle tickets, contact Main Street Searcy at (501) 279-9007.

Staff writer Kayla Baugh can be reached at (501) 244-4307 or kbaugh@arkansasonline.com.

None Kayla Baugh can be reached at 501-244-4307 or kbaugh@arkansasonline.com.

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