OkTARberfest & More: Music, Food, and Living History in Louisburg Oct. 19-20

OkTARberfest 2018 flyer. Source: Town of Louisburg NC
OkTARberfest 2018 flyer. Source: Town of Louisburg NC

This year, OkTARberfest Weekend is planned for October 19-20, 2018 in Louisburg, North Carolina.

Why the odd spelling of this festival’s name? Well, the Tar River runs through Louisburg and that’s where this annual event got its unique name.  OkTARberfest is a renaming of the old Tar River Festival.

This Town of Louisburg weekend festival coincides with other happenings around town — an Oyster Roast organized by the Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce and a literary event by the Franklin County Arts Council — making Louisburg the place to spend the weekend!

Parking will be available downtown, near the new town amphitheatre, and at River Bend Park. Check each event’s location to plan parking accordingly. Locations are included in the listings for Friday and Saturday happenings.

Friday Happenings

Evening Free Concert (6:30-9:30pm)

On Friday, October 19, 2018, 6:30-9:30pm, there will be a free, public concert featuring Kids in America — a Totally 80’s Tribute Band based in Charlotte NC.

This event’s location is the Pete Smith Automotive Amphitheatre, 116 N Main Street, Louisburg NC.

Local Authors Book Signing & Refreshments (6-8pm)

Also on Friday, October 19, 2018, 6-8pm, the Franklin County Arts Council — which is adjacent to the new amphitheatre, will be open for those looking for holiday gifts made by local artists, there will be a book signing with a “Six Pack of Authors”, and refreshments — cider and cookies — are expected to be available.

This event will be held in the FCAC Gallery, 118 B North Main Street, Louisburg NC, with parking near the building.

Saturday Happenings

River of Yesteryear (10am-3pm)

Take a walk through history with the River of Yesteryear on Saturday, October 20, 2018, 10am-3pm. The River of Yesteryear offers a living history of Colonial times with costumed performers, old-time activities, and artisans and vendors offering a variety of arts and crafts for sale. See demonstrations, or join in with interactive history games.

Walk through yesteryear at River Bend Park, entrance at the end of S Church Street, Louisburg NC.

Oyster Roast (5-7pm)

The Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its first-annual Oyster Roast on Saturday, October 20, 2018, 5-7pm.

A variety of food will be offered, with something for everyone. The menu includes steamed oysters, steamed shrimp, fried fish, BBQ pork, and side dishes including coleslaw, french fries, and hush puppies.

Water, sweet tea, and iced tea will be available. Beer sales will start at 5pm and run until “last call” or while supplies last. All guests will be asked to show their ID at the gate upon arrival and get a wristband. No outside alcohol, no outside food, nor coolers are permitted. Attendees are asked to enjoy the food and drinks available during the oyster roast.

The Chamber’s Oyster Roast is a ticketed event. According to Chamber representative Danielle Monaco, there are a total of 225 tickets available, and they are going fast.

Each ticket is $35 per person (must bring ticket to the event) and includes two beer tickets (provided on entry) for beer provided by Tar Banks Brewing Co.

To purchase tickets, go to the Chamber offices at 112 E Nash Street, Louisburg NC. Proceeds will benefit the Chamber’s programs.

Children 12 years of age and younger will be admitted free with a ticketed adult.

The roast will be set up in a tent, located in the vacant lot (across from Franklin County Courthouse’s parking lot) along W Johnson Street, Louisburg NC.

Free Concert (6:30-9:30pm)

The second free concert of OkTARberfest is Saturday, October 20, 2018, 6:30-9:30pm. Enjoy a free, public concert by the East Coast Rhythm and Blues Band. This Spring Hope NC-based band will play beach music for your listening and dancing pleasure.

This concert’s location is expected to be the Pete Smith Automotive Amphitheatre, 116 N Main Street, Louisburg NC.

Additional Resources

Contacts

For more information on OkTARberfest, or if interested in becoming a vendor, call the Town of Louisburg office at 919.496.3406 or email Jina “J” Stamey.

With questions about the inaugural Oyster Roast, call the Chamber at 919.496.3056. The Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce is online at franklin-county-nc.chambermaster.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheGreaterFranklinCountyChamber.

For more information on the FCAC literary event, contact Ellen Queen at 919.497.6910 or via email.

River Bend Park

Overseen by the town’s Parks and Recreation Department, a variety of events are held in River Bend Park. The park is also open to the public for walking, fishing, playing, and enjoying the outdoors.

River Bend Park and downtown map. Source: Parks and Recreation Department, Town of Louisburg, North Carolina.
River Bend Park and downtown map. Source: Parks and Recreation Department, Town of Louisburg, North Carolina.

Pete Smith Automotive Amphitheatre

Opened in 2017 for the Friday Nights on the Tar event series, the amphitheatre is located downtown and offers a comfortable grass/seating area facing a stage.

The venue’s name came from the Pete Smith Automotive company, which has Pete Smith Tire & Quick Lube locations in Louisburg, Henderson, and Rolesville NC.

Stage at the Pete Smith Automotive Amphitheatre in Louisburg NC. Photo: Donna Campbell Smith
Stage at the Pete Smith Automotive Amphitheatre in Louisburg NC. Photo: Donna Campbell Smith

 

See more events at this venue via the town’s website.

About Kay Whatley 1948 Articles
Kay Whatley serves as Editor and Reporter with The Grey Area News. Kay is a published author with over 20 years of experience in the publishing industry. Kay Whatley is wife to Frank Whatley, founder of The Grey Area™ newspaper and The Grey Area News online news website.