Tar River Festival is Sept. 10

2016 Tar River Festival logo
2016 Tar River Festival logo

By Kay Whatley, Editor

The annual Tar River Festival will this year include the usual fun activities, plus a food truck rodeo, local vendors, a 5K run, and a little bit of learning with the River of Yesteryear.

This year’s festival is September 10, 2016, 10am-5pm. Activities are scheduled around Riverbend Park and downtown Louisburg.  Riverbend Park is located at the end of S Church Street, Louisburg NC.

Come out for the day and enjoy the fun, organized by the Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce.

This is the 27th year for this festival, the town’s annual “celebration of Fall.” Admission is free. This public event welcomes visitors from all over; you don’t have to live in Franklin County to come and enjoy this county event! If planning to shop from vendors and food trucks or purchase pony rides, be sure to bring cash. You’ll have a good time and support the town and local businesses!

This event is held rain or shine. Check the weather and plan accordingly, with sunblock, or umbrella, as appropriate.


The 2016 Tar River Festival activities include expanded offerings.  “Bigger and better than ever” is how the organizers describe it, and they are working hard now so that you can relax and enjoy the day on September 10.

The River of Yesteryear Committee is hard at work expanding their efforts to take visitors back in time. River of Yesteryear includes demonstrations of cultural and heritage-based events. This part of the festival is expanded this year to cover more history and provide more educational information. So, have a fun day and stop by to learn a little too.

A Food Truck Rodeo is added for this year. Pick up a meal or snack from trucks offering organic burgers, Asian food options, barbecue, Caribbean cuisine, seafood, Latin American treats, European choices, and American foods. There will be voting for favorite food truck, with the winner being awarded with a special trophy. Of course, there will be snow cones, funnel cakes, hot dogs and other foods available for sale at the festival.

Enjoy live Performances by high school bands and dance groups. There will be karaoke for the brave. Plus, The Switch Band is coming to play their blend of classic and current songs from several genres.

Kids Zone, inflatables, a climbing wall, pony rides, other rides, and games will keep youngsters busy. Stop by for an arts and acraft activity, pick up a balloon from the festival’s scheduled balloon artist, or get face painting. Special guests for children will be walking the festival in costume in the afternoon.

The 5K Tar River Run/Walk will be held on the festival day. Registration is open now. This part of the festival is being organized with Louisburg College.

Local business and artisans for your shopping pleasure. Pick up some local or unusual items you can use and support local vendors. Check out the arts and crafts by artists and crafters from Franklin County and surrounding areas. The streets will be lined with the arts and craft, business, and nonprofit organizations, making it easy for visitors to check them all out while walking in beautiful Riverbend Park.


The Tar River Festival organizers need volunteers for this year’s festival. To help, contact B. Fuller by email or N. Medlin by email.

More Information

This year, there is an official Tar River Festival Facebook page for festival updates, available here.

For more information on the Greater Franklin County Chamber of Commerce, visit their website at http://www.franklin-chamber.org, or visit the Chamber Facebook page.

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About Kay Whatley 2309 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.