Tuesday, September 29, 2015

TOP STORY >> Festival set for Saturday

Leader staff writer

Offerings at the 39th annual Sherwood Fest, which is 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, continue the medieval-meets-new-world theme launched last year that was inspired by the city’s name and Robin Hood mascot.

The event is at Sherwood Forest, 1111 W. Maryland Ave.

A hammer-throw contest sponsored by Boomerang Car Wash starts at 3, as does the pie jousting competition, which is sponsored by Gadwall’s Grill.

The headliner this year is Joshua Davis, who placed third in the most recent season of “The Voice.” His website reads that he “was raised in the folk tradition: the music, the social movements, the land. He writes songs that blend the roots of American music with gritty rock n’ roll and vintage soul... His music is steeped in ragtime blues, sweet jazz and real country.” The award-winning artist, who lives in Traverse City, Mich., has toured the U.S. and Canada for over 15 years.

Mayor Virginia Young said Sherwood Fest would “have a lot of good entertainment, and it looks like it’s going to be the most entertainment we’ve had.”

She noted, “I think it’s going to be something that’s going to be nice. I think people should get out and enjoy the community.”

Organizer Misty Heaton said, “It’s going to be bigger and better than ever.” Medieval costumes are encouraged, she added.

The entertainment includes:

• Marisa and Jacq’s Dancers at 10:45 a.m.,

• The Southwind Band from Sherwood at 11:15 a.m.,

• gospel-rock artist John Neal from Little Rock at 12:30 p.m.,

• Ms. Karen’s Dance Studio at 1:30 p.m.,

• Trout Fishing in America at 1:45 p.m.,

• New Creation Dance Company on the indoor stage at 2 p.m.,

• country singer Michael Callahan, a Sherwood native who lives in Nashville, Tenn., at 3:15 p.m.

• and Impact Gymnastics at 4 p.m.

All performances are on the outdoor stage unless otherwise noted.

The festival kicks off with a Conquer the Climb 5K at 7:30 a.m. Sherwood CrossFit and the Sherwood Rotary Club are sponsoring the fun run.

Sherwood Cross Fit also sponsored a tug of war contest at 2 p.m.

Registration for the run, before Saturday, is $15 for ages 15 and under. It’s $25 for ages 16 and over. The cost is $30 for those who register on race day.

Proceeds will benefit the Rotary Club’s scholarship fund and youth programs.

The top overall male contestant, the top overall female contestant and the top three in four age categories — 15 and under, 16-29, 30-49 and 50 plus — will be recognized.

There’s plenty else to enjoy, too, with more than 75 vendors participating.

The city’s police and fire departments will compete in at least one contest for the traveling Merrymen Golden Chalice Award trophy. Firefighters are also excited to show off a new ladder truck.

A horseshoe competition (sponsored by Hearts and Hooves) will be held at 10 a.m.

A cute kids contest sponsored by Centennial Bank is at 10 a.m. on the indoor stage.

An archery tournament —in its second year and sponsored by Outdoor World Bass Pro Shop — will be held at 11 a.m.

The castle-building contest was introduced at the 2014 festival and is sponsored by Keep Sherwood Beautiful. Register from 8 to 10 a.m. to create castles between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. using recycled cardboard boxes, plastic, paper and tape. Judging is at 2:30 p.m., and prizes will be awarded.

Register for contests at the information booth 30 minutes prior, unless otherwise noted.

The advertising and promotions commission sponsors the event. Best Western is a friend of the festival sponsor.