PARKERSBURG - The first day of the 50th annual Harvest Moon Arts and Crafts Festival was successful as thousands of people flocked to City Park where artisans display and sell their items.
"The crowd has been non-stop," said event director Vickie Marshall said. "It's fantastic with attendance up."
In recognizing a milestone half-century of the festival, the children of one of the original vendors were honored.
Sisters Jackie Haycook, right, and Marie Weekley pose with the crystal vase award they were given for their family's 50 years of involvement with the Harvest Moon Arts and Crafts Festival in City Park on Saturday.
"Our mother was at the first show and our father joined her the second year," said Jackie Haycook, daughter of Liliane and Bill Reed. Liliane Reed was a basket weaver while Bill Reed was a woodcarver.
"When we were teenagers our parents made us take part in the festival and we've been part of it ever since," Haycook said.
Marie Weekley, her sister, who has a crafting business with Haycook The Gang's All Here, said the award they were given is recognition for being able to promote West Virginia crafts.
"We were always understanding that if you give, you get back," Weekley said. "We have promoted West Virginia crafts in Texas and California so people know what we are about."
Haycook said her family is excited about the 50th anniversary of the festival because of what it allows crafters to do.
"We see it as a continuance of a heritage our parents helped start," she said.
Haycook and Weekley were presented with a crystal vase award by Parkersburg Mayor Bob Newell and Wood County Commissioner Blair Couch.
The festival not only includes several tents with about 190 vendors and demonstrations of wood carving, pottery, soap making and basket weaving, but also food vendors. It continues today from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. with general admission at $3.
All proceeds from admission fees go towards programs of the Wood County Recreation Commission.