On Sept. 8, my hometown, the thriving micropolis of Marion, North Carolina, will host our state’s biggest and best (and, so far, only) Bigfoot festival, a celebration of all things Sasquatchian.
After the Associated Press, the source I turn to for information on small-town festivals centered around mythical creatures, picked up the story and distributed it nationwide, I, as the editor of the local newspaper, was inundated with phone calls and emails (I would put the number at four) from around the country (or at least as far away as Florence, South Carolina) from folks who wanted to know more. The following is a recreation of a typical phone call.
Me: This is Scott. May I help you?
Caller: Yeah, Steve, I seen on the TV news where y’all are having a Bigfoot festival. Is that the truth or some of that fake news from the lame-stream media?
Me: It’s true. The 2018 WNC Bigfoot Festival is Sept 8. Come join us.
Caller: Are y’all having panels and such, people talking about Bigfoot?
Me: There are vendors and a town hall-type discussion and, if I was a betting man, I would wager that meeting will center more around Bigfoot and less about the increase in water and sewer fees.
Caller: Is Bobo going to be there?
Me: I’m not sure who Bobo is.
Caller: That’s about what I figured from the lame-stream media.
Bobo, I later learned through my research department (Google) is James “Bobo” Fay, former roadie for the rock band sublime and noted Bigfoot investigator featured on Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot” documentary series. As of this writing, Bobo is not on the schedule.
Anyway, to satisfy other enquiring minds and help promote my town, I, as the newly appointed senior mythical creature correspondent for this award-winning publication, came up with the following Q&A about the 2018 WNC Bigfoot Festival.
Q. Hey, Steve, exactly where and when is this Bigfoot festival I’ve heard so much about, and not just from the voices inside my head?
A. Downtown Marion, North Carolina, where main street meets the mountains, on Sept. 8, from noon to 6 p.m., with a 5K run beginning at 8 a.m.
Q. Will Bigfoot chase the runners during the 5K? Because he’s pretty fast is what Bobo says.
A. That is still to be determined.
Q. Whose heading this thing up? It’s not you, is it? Because I’ve heard tell you don’t have sense enough to find your rear-end with both hands and a roadmap.
A. No, not me. It’s Bigfoot 911, the local Bigfoot research group, with the help of city officials. This comes after my plans for The Great American Monkey Festival were met with less enthusiasm than I and the rest of the Monkey Action News Team had hoped.
Q. What kind of activities are y’all having at the Bigfoot festival there in Marion?
A. According to organizers, there will be an opening ceremony at noon with a proclamation declaring Bigfoot the official “animal” of Marion, pictures with Bigfoot, a scavenger hunt, a Bigfoot calling contest, a Bigfoot knocking contest, a town hall meeting, raffles, inflatables for the kids and more.
Q. A fellow could get mighty thirsty at a Bigfoot Festival. Is there anywhere in town where one might wet his whistle before entering the Bigfoot calling contest?
A. Darn tootin.’ We’ve got Mica Town Brewing, Refinery 13, the Spillway Bridge Co. and Mulligan Mack’s Downtown After 5 (better known as Bob’s). And if any of those establishments want to offer me a free beer for mentioning them in a column, well, who am I in the spirit of Bigfoot to turn them down?
Q. Wouldn’t that be unethical?
A. I’ll ask Bobo next time I see him.
Scott Hollifield is editor/GM of The McDowell News in Marion, NC and a humor columnist. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
**Editors: If used online, below is a link to the festival Facebook page.**