The streets of downtown Pilot Mountain will close to weekend traffic on Friday morning at 11 a.m. but should soon fill with festive residents and visitors gathered for the 37th annual Mayfest celebration.
Opening ceremonies are scheduled for 12:30 on Friday with all vendors to be open by 2 pm. A full day of music, food and fun will be available on Saturday while Sunday will see vendors open at 1 for the afternoon. Mayfest will come to an end on Sunday at 6 p.m.
As it has from the beginning, the Pilot Mountain Civic Club will serve as sponsor for this year’s festival. According to club member and Mayfest Chairman Scott Needham, 100 vendors will be taking part in this year’s festival. As of last weekend, a limited number of spaces were available but organizers are still processing applications.
“We have some vendors who have been with us for awhile and others who are excited about taking part for the first time,” Needham said. “It’s a good mix of old favorites and new offerings. This year, we’ve made a point of emphasizing our craft vendors and of putting quality over quantity.”
Food choices should also be plentiful as Depot Street will be filled with options ranging from favorites to the unusual. A limited number of additional food vendors will be scattered throughout the town.
In what Needham called “an unexpected bright spot,” the section for rides will be offering an expanded selection with several new features. An expanded number of children’s rides will include inflatables, while being joined by an assortment of carnival-type rides.
“And,” Needham said, “we’re hoping for things to work out allowing us to be able to offer some surprises.”
Mayfest annually serves as the club’s primary fundraiser for the year, providing roughly two-thirds of the club’s budget for charitable, civic and community donations for the year.
The group’s annual contributions include a Surry Community College scholarship, support of the Pilot Mountain Outreach Center’s food bank, helping the Armfield Civic Center with its debt reduction efforts, the Shepherd’s House, the East Surry Little League program and local schools.
“We count on Mayfest, but we also feel strongly about its importance as a local event,” Needham noted. “It’s the face of our organization and it brings people here from all over the Southeast and the East Coast. They get to see what a nice town we have and it helps our economy. There are a lot of good effects from Mayfest. It’s a win for everyone it touches.”