PICKENS COUNTY — The date is fast approaching for the 19th annual Blue Ridge Fest, but for members of the electric co-op, the festival means more than just having a good time. It’s all about giving back to the community.
Twelve upstate charities have been selected to receive proceeds from this year’s festival, including four in Pickens County.
“This is a big deal,” said Liza Holder of the electric cooperative. “Last year we raised $185,000 for 12 charities. We hope to do more this year.”
Holder said that throughout the festival’s 18-year history, over $2 million has been raised for various charities and organizations all over the Upstate.
This year’s recipients of the festival’s proceeds were selected from a list of over 100 applicants by a committee made up entirely of Blue Ridge employees.
In Pickens County, Emerson Rose Heart Foundation, Feed a Hungry Child, The Dream Center and Samaritan Health Clinic all made the final cut.
“From the people serving your food to the people you see emptying trash barrels, they are all volunteers from Blue Ridge,” said Holder.
In addition to helping out some worthy causes, the Blue Ridge Fest offers food, music, entertainment and the largest cruise-in in the Upstate.
“If we have a pretty, sunny day, we’re probably going to have 500 to 600 cars,” said Holder. “And they’re going to come really early. Our line-up begins at 2, but that’s like 7 a.m. to them,” she said and laughed. “Gates will open at 3 (for classic cars) and if you come in a 1979 car or older, $30 will admit a car-load of up to four. So that’s a pretty good deal.”
Musical performances this year include Jay and the Americans, Jimmy Beaumont and the Skyliners, and Jim Quick and Coastline.
The 19th annual Blue Ridge Fest is May 6 from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Blue Ridge Electric Co-Op, 734 W. Main St. in Pickens. Admission is $25 for adults and $15 for children. Visit blueridgefest.com for more information.
Reach Kasie Strickland at 864-855-0355.