John Howell Sr. editorial 5/5/2015

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 5, 2015

SpringFest, now only 10 days away, just keeps getting better

Batesville’s signature homecoming and festival event will have added features this year, Main Street Manager Colleen Clark tells me.

The kids area where they have been pitting themselves against the rock climbing wall will also have a mechanical bull. (I know it’s supposed to be a kids area, but I can think of a few folks whose ride I’d gladly pay for.)

There will also be inflateables that children can play on at no cost, she said — an obstacle course, a slide and a bouncy house.

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Main Street increased the number of attractions for youngsters in that area of the Square in an attempt to bring more people in early. The kids area (this is separate, of course, from the carnival that will be underway on the opposite side of the Square) will open at 5 p. m. Friday.
That’s another reason that Springfest keeps getting better. The people who spend months planning for it keep looking for ways to improve it.

Next weekend two days of music, food and visiting with friends will be open to us right on the Batesville Square. With a little cooperation from the weather, we will start Friday evening with Harmony and close the evening with Class Act — that’s musicians Mark Heafner, William Correro, Tommy Howe, Bill Harmon and Jeff Axthelm.

Saturday morning starts with Races for Paws, then the youth talent contest followed by nine acts starting with the Eric Deaton Trio and closing with Diamond Rio. In Saturday’s mix, another local group, the Litigants with Bob Morris, C. D. Overton and Will Smith, will perform.
In the background the swirling lights and sounds of the carnival will only add to the festive atmosphere.

Which reminds me: last year I made a rash statement to Mary Troxler about riding the Nemesis 360, that upside down contraption that hurdles its riders 100 feet or more above the Square before throwing back down toward the pavement.

I told Mary if she’d ride it, I’d follow on the next ride. All the while her husband Jerry was trying to warn me off. Someone had already dared her. She took the dare, rode the Nemesis 360 — and loved it. Fortunately for me her shift at St. Mary’s Funnel Cake Emporium started before she had a chance to take me up on it.