Homespun Festival 2018

Fireworks began right at 9:30 p.m. Saturday night to cap off Homespun 2018. / Kevin Myrick

The halfway point of the summer has come and gone as Homespun 2018 wrapped up a weekend of all kinds of fun for all in Rockmart.

Now that the fireworks show has finished, and the duck race ran its course through a small stretch of Euharlee Creek, everyone now has to face the coming heat and hope the brief wisp of autumn air on the way will last more than a few seconds.

It was slightly cooler than the normal summer heat on Friday evening for the start of the 41st annual celebration, with quite a number of booths ready for local residents and visitors alike to peruse.

“We had 89 vendors for this year’s Homespun, which is a new record,” Polk County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Blair Elrod said.

She did add that an early morning storm blew through just in time for the festival to continue. Usually organizers are dreading and then contending with rain showers during the event.

“We’re thankful the storm passed and it wasn’t during festival hours,” she said. “It was great to see everyone out and enjoying Homespun.”

She added her additional thanks to all the volunteers, officials, vendors and others who put in countless hours of work to help make the festival a success.

Though Friday night is always fun at Homespun, it was Saturday that really drew the crowd.

It kicked off with the annual Homespun 5K in downtown Rockmart.

Then came the annual Homespun Parade featuring a show from the Shriners, local youth and plenty of vehicles behind it was headed up by Grand Marshals Garry Baldwin and Ken Suffridge, the current and a former Mayor of the City of Aragon.

That then gave way to the opening act of the day, dancers from Ballet Garden showing off their moves to the Homespun audience around the stage, along with numerous other bands and singers who provided entertainment throughout the day, at least until the 2 p.m. duck race.

People lined Euharlee Creek to see the event put on as a fundraiser by the Rotary Club of Polk County, held as a fundraiser for the organization who then contributes to a variety of local causes.

The number that matched the ticket for the first duck in won $1,000, and $100 went to the winning ticket that matched the final duck across the finish line. Harold McDurmon won first place with his winning ticket with the $1,000 duck, and Terry Ganoe won $100 with his ticket earning him the last duck in.

Additional concerts continued through the afternoon until Redneck Romeos took the stage to wrap up Homespun in Seaborn Jones Park, but the event really was capped off by the annual fireworks show over the City of Rockmart.

Elrod said next year she and organizers are going to work toward getting additional space, vendors and sponsors to increase Homespun even more.

So now that Polk County is entering the second half of summer, everyone can at least take a sigh of relief that maybe the heat won’t last too much longer. But there’s still more than two months left before the season ends, and fall finally arrives for Rockmart’s next festival.