Gobble, gobble, gobble! Calling all hens, jakes and toms — it’s that time of year again. The 2012 Wild Turkey Festival is a little more than a month away, and this year’s committee shows no signs of stopping until every feather is in its place. Be sure to be in McArthur the weekend of May 3-6 for a family festival that is unmatched anywhere else in the state. Come celebrate the wild turkey and all this region has to offer with fun events fit for every gobbler. The following is a list of just some of the things that this year’s Wild Turkey Festival has in store:
Entertainment — The 2012 entertainment line up includes national acts as well as local acts. The Thursday night national act, Eden’s Edge, will perform at 8:30 p.m. On Friday night, bluegrass musicians the James King Band will take the stage. Saturday, will be feature local acts including Eastwood at 8 p.m. and Junkyard Republic at 9 p.m. On Sunday, the local Christian band, 4 This Cause, will take the stage at 12:30 p.m.
Grand Marshall — The 2012 Grand Marshals are the members of the McArthur Police Department. The department is headed by Chief Tony Wood.
Queen’s Contest — Applications for the 2012 Queens Contest are available at the Vinton County High School. For more information, call Chris Cram at 591-1118. The pageant will be held on April 21 at the Vinton County High School. The pageant will feature members of the Dance Sport at OSU.
Turkey Trot — The Annual 5K Run/Walk will be held on May 5, rain or shine. Registration begins at 8 a.m. Race starts promptly at 9 a.m. at the Old Vinton County High School, 307 W. High St., McArthur. The pre-registration fee is $10 and race day registration is $15. The first 40 registrants will receive a free T-shirt. Overall and age group awards will be given. For more information, contact Tory Gosling at 419-202-4196 or Lindsey and Jeremy Janey at 988-6228. Registration forms are available at the Vinton County Courier office, Vinton County Visitors’ Center or the Probate Juvenile Court office.
Coloring Contest — This will be the first annual Vinton County Wild Turkey Festival Coloring Contest. The picture can be picked up at the Vinton County Local Schools, the Vinton County Courier and the Vinton County Courthouse after March 30. There is a $1 entry fee per picture. There is no limit to the number of pictures a child can enter. Winners will be chosen from those attending the Wild Turkey Festival. Each picture will have a bag for people to drop in money. The picture with the most money will be the winner. Winners will be announced May 6. Everyone may participate. Finished colored pictures can be turned into Lindsey Janey in the Vinton County Courthouse, Juvenile and Probate Court or Annie Gosling at the Vinton County Courier office. All pictures for consideration must be turned in by April 30.
Little Mister Gobbler and Little Miss Gobblerette — Applications have been distributed to the schools. The contest is open to any student in preschool through third grade enrolled in the Vinton County Local School District. One boy and one girl will be chosen. The contest is decided by penny votes. The student who collects the most pennies will earn the title. Money must be mailed to P.O. Box 54, McArthur by May 2. For more information, call Chris Cram at 591-1118.
Karaoke Contest — This year’s contest is open to the first 25 participates to register. The contest will be held on the Main Stage beginning at noon on May 5. All participants must be registered with their music turned in by 11:30 a.m. The entry fee is $15. For more information, contact Mike Zeigler at 418-9682.
Baby Contest — The annual contest will be held on stage May 6 at 2 p.m.. The contest is open to any baby ages birth to 36 months old as of May 6, 2012. Entrants must complete an entry form, which can be picked up at area businesses after March 30. The entry fee this year for pre-registration is $5. Entries will be accepted the day of the contest but the fee will be $7. All entries should be mailed to: Wild Turkey Festival Baby Contest, P.O. Box 54, McArthur, OH 45651.
Parade — The annual parade will be held May 5 at 6 p.m. All participants must be in line by 5:30 p.m. Entry forms are available at the Vinton County Courier Office or by contacting any committee member. There will be no horses, ATVs or candy-throwing. This year, the festival committee will asking that community groups, churches and any other organization participate to make this the biggest parade to date.
Craft/Organizational Tent — The tent will return this year. As a special to Vinton County organizations, the fee has been lowered to $100 for the four-day festival. Contact Annie Gosling at 637-5537 or Chris Cram at 591-1118.
Car Show — The annual show will be held on May 6. Registration will begin at 10 a.m.
Country Roads Quilt Guild Quilt Show — This event will be held in the basement of the McArthur Methodist Church, 200 S. Market St., McArthur. Registration will be held May 1, from 2-7 p.m. For more information, call Meta VanNostran at 593-6568.
The festival committee has other events that are still in the planning stages and will be announced as soon as possible. Plans are underway for a youth turkey calling contest, a turkey dish baking contest and many others. Additionally, the festival will be holding two raffles this year — one for a iPad 2 and a turkey drop.
Submitted by the Wild Turkey Festival Committee