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Heart Of Virginia Festival Plans Are Underway

The appearance of daffodils and tulips is an unmistakable sign that it will soon be time for Farmville's annual Heart of Virginia Festival. Each year on the first Saturday in May, which this year is May 7, the town's Main Street and High Street are transformed from the usual traffic corridors into a pedestrian mall, packed with residents and visitors who have come to celebrate life in the heart of Virginia.

Since Mother's Day is the day after the festival this year, attendees will be able to find a wide selection of appropriate gifts at the craft or art booths. Most of the attractions are home grown, although some of the vendors and performers come from a distance. A majority of the handicrafts, especially those displayed in the art show, have been produced within a few miles of Farmville.

The Heart of Virginia Festival prides itself on offering something for everyone. The festival kicks off with a 10K Run / 5K Fun Walk from Hampden-Sydney College to the First Avenue Field in Farmville. Civic groups offer chances for involvement in various forms of community service. For car enthusiasts there is a Classic Car Cruise-In. Much of the entertainment is presented by local talent, and there are many activities for children, including an art workshop. Again this year the festival will conclude with a fireworks show at the Farmville airport.

The festival showcases many vendors, including local organizations, offering a wide variety of food choices. (Spots are still available if a local organization or vendor would like to serve their favorite food to the crowd at the airport festivities.) Vendors and exhibitors can receive information at www.heartofvirginia.org.

A festival of this size and diversity is possible because of the work of countless volunteers. Even as the festival is over a months away, the Board of Directors is issuing a call for help at this time. Volunteers will be needed to help on the day of the festival. If interested, contact Sarah Hobgood, director of Volunteers, at shobgood25@gmail.com.

The HOVF Board of Directors works year round, with the aim that each year's festival will be better than the one before. This requires constant planning, coordinating and fund raising, as community financial support is a major key to the success of each year's event. The Board is already looking for people with fresh ideas to help in planning the 2012 festival. If interested in joining the HOVF Board of Directors, email hovfchair@gmail.com. Those who are willing to provide financial sponsorship may contact Blair Potts at blair.potts@gmail.com.

As May approaches, watch the pages of this paper and listen to the local radio stations for news about this year's lineup of events.