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Fort Mill’s Strawberry Festival is ‘off to the races’ with Kentucky Derby theme

Sarah Chloe Sanders gets in the strawberry spirit at last year’s festival. This year’s extends for two days.
Sarah Chloe Sanders gets in the strawberry spirit at last year’s festival. This year’s extends for two days. FILE.

The South Carolina Strawberry Festival is off to the races.

The sixth edition of Fort Mill’s annual spring festival is “Race for the Berries,” a Kentucky Derby-themed weekend that will have blasts from years past and a few new treats.

The Strawberry Festival, the town’s award-winning signature festival, kicks off at 4 p.m. Friday. The two-day festival in Walter Elisha Park on North White Street in Fort Mill concludes Saturday, and will include music, arts and crafts vendors, business vendors, rides, food and contests and more.

Headlining opening night is the Gin Blossoms, the popular ‘90s band whose hit singles include “Follow you Down,” “’Til I Hear it From You,” and “Hey, Jealousy.”

Saturday will begin with the traditional pancake breakfast, all-you-can eat for $6 per person in the Nation Ford High School cafeteria. At the festival grounds on North White Street, contests will be ongoing throughout the day, including an ice cream eating contest, strawberry shortcake eating contest, celebrity shortcake contest, and the world’s hottest wing-eating contest.

Adjacent to the festival grounds will also be a classic car show, including more than 100 classic cars competing for prizes.

Parking at the festival grounds is limited. Buses run constantly from various park and ride locations across town and are free to use. Check the website scstrawberryfestival.com for the one nearest you.

For more information about the Strawberry Festival, including a full listing of musical acts for The Strawberry Jam, go to www.scstrawberryfestival.com, or email info@scstrawberryfestival.com.

2015 S.C. Strawberry Festival

Here’s a list of scheduled events at Walter Elisha Park:

Friday, 4 p.m. – 11 p.m. SC Strawberry Festival, 345 N. White Street

9:15-10:45 The Gin Blossoms, Founders Stage

Saturday, 9 a.m. – 10 p.m. SC Strawberry Festival, 345 N. White Street

Car Show, adjacent to festival grounds

8 a.m. Pancake breakfast, Nation Ford High School cafeteria

1 p.m. Ice Cream Eating Contest

2 p.m. Shortcake Eating Contest

3 p.m. Celebrity Shortcake Eating Contest

4 p.m. World’s Hottest Wing Eating Contest

* Schedule subject to change. For any updates in the festival schedule, go to scstrawberryfestival.com.

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