FAIRMONT, W.Va. – The annual Three Rivers Festival is kicking off in full force in 2021.
Last year, the festival held only a few events due to COVID precautions, but this year, everything is back.
“I’m excited to get back out into the community to see the community and get back to a new sense of normal,” John Dodds, member of the Three Rivers Board of Directors said. “We’re going to have pageants. We’re going to have wood carvers. We’re going to have pepperoni role eating contest. We’re going to have educational events for children, of course, free live music.”
Organizers of the event have been working closely with the health department this year to keep everyone safe while having fun.
“I think that people are going to be happy and ready to get out, as long as we continue to be cautious and safe,” Dodds said. “If you want to wear a mask, wear a mask. If you want to distance, then distance. We always should be washing our hands and taking the standard precautions.”
This year’s grand marshal for the parade is Fairmont State University president Dr. Mirta Martin.
“Our community has such a rich history, celebrated each year at the Three Rivers Festival,” said Martin. “This year’s celebration is even more special as we begin to, not only re-engage with community activities, but, more importantly, also reconnect with each other. I am honored to serve as the Ceremonial Parade Marshal, and I look forward to celebrating this community’s proud history—and bright future—with my fellow citizens.”
The festival started out 42 years ago as Septemberfest, but in 1998, it got its current name: Three Rivers Festival. The date of the festival was also moved from the month of September to earlier in the year in hopes of having better weather. This years’ forecast has some expected rain in it, but Dodds said the show will go on.
“I think, as a community, it’s going to be nice to get out, regardless of the weather, but let’s keep our fingers crossed that we have good weather.”
The full list of events for the Three Rivers Festival can be found online.