The 11th annual North Carolina Blueberry Festival will be held on June 21 in downtown Burgaw. Parking will be available at Pender Landing Shopping Center, located at the intersection of U.S. 117 and U.S. 53, as well as at the Pender County Government Complex, located along U.S. 53 Business/ South Walker Street. Trolleys will run every 10 to 15 minutes to transport festival-goers.
Downtown parking will also be available along Dickerson Street along the railroad right a ways both north and south of the Historic Burgaw Train Depot.
Here are some tips for those planning to attend:
1. Bring sunscreen, lots of water, and wear light clothes because it gets hot!
2. The earlier in the morning you get there, the better. Traffic gets backed up on N.C. 53 coming from I-40. If you are heading east on I-40 toward Wilmington, get off at exit 390 and come down N.C. 117 and turn off onto N.C. 117 Business to go into Burgaw. For those heading west on I-40 from Wilmington, it might be better to get off at the Rocky Point exit and come into Burgaw on N.C. 117 and turn off onto N.C. 117 Business to go into town.
3. Have a cooler with ice in the car in case you buy blueberries to take home.
4. Bring a backpack or bag to carry purchased items and freebies handed out by vendors.
5. Keep an eye out for charities and church groups handing out free bottles of water.
6. Plenty of vendors will offer food to nosh during the festivities. But if you want to experience one of Burgaw’s restaurants for lunch (and enjoy some air conditioning), you can avoid long waits by planning to eat earlier or later than typical lunch hours.
7. Forget any essentials? The Piggly Wiggly behind the historic train depot is just a couple of blocks from the courthouse square.
8. If you plan to hang out and enjoy the bands for a while, bring a blanket or lawn chairs to sit on.
9 a.m. - All vendors open, car show begins
U.S. Marine Corp Band performs
10 a.m. - Opening ceremony
11 a.m. to 1 pm The Embers featuring Craig Woolard perform
1:15 to 2 p.m. - Introduction of the Newly Crowned 2014 NC Blueberry Festival Queens
Recognition of the 2014 Blueberry Belles
BBQ Cookoff Awards presented
3 p.m.- The Classic Collection Band performs
Car and Truck Show awards presented
6 p.m. - The Fantastic Shakers perform
9 p.m. - Festival Closes