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Peabody's Fall Festival organizers seek to grow event

Staff writer

The Peabody Fall Festival celebrates its second year on Saturday, as organizers look to continue growing the event.

A Wiffle ball tournament is set to make its debut at 8 a.m. at the city park.

A Newton community member with experience organizing Wiffle ball tournaments brought the idea to the committee, said Ginger Whitney, chairman for the festival.

The other new event is the afternoon’s washer tournament to benefit the July 4 scholarship fund.

It was added as an event after seeing success during the July 4 tournament, Whitney said.

“We were looking for something to continue in the afternoon,” she said.

Organizers wanted to make good use of the festival shuttle by rolling out more events, Whitney said.

“It allows us to showcase our downtown and its businesses, and our 1880s Main St.,” she said.

In addition to the museums, and car show at Affordable Street Rods, the festival will bring back activities from last year, including a scarecrow competition, bounce houses, and live music from Tallgrass Express String Band.

“People are really excited,” Whitney said. “They were excited with how much was going on last year. We have our dinners at the farmers market, and people have expressed a lot of interest.”

While the Peabody Fall Festival is the same day as Hillsboro’s and Marion’s craft shows, Whitney’s hope is that they won’t have to compete for tourists.

“This is going to be a trial-year again,” she said. “Last year it was the weekend after Marion and Hillsboro craft fairs. This year it’s the same weekend, so it’s going to be a trial to see if we have as much success.”

The scarecrow competition is an event Whitney heard of in other communities, she said.

“Ours are different because you can go and see them at the residences,” she said. “We hope to have a map of where they are this year.”

There are around 30 vendors who have signed on, with several local businesses participating, Whitney said.

“There’s a new interest to try and promote things, and get things moving again,” she said. “We can all do at least a little to make things move forward.

Last modified Sept. 18, 2019

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