Friday, October 7, 2011

Sentiment and Nostalgia

See this sign?

Just looking at it transports me back to my childhood.  In New Salem,Georgia for the past 36 years there has been a mountain festival during the second weekend in October. 
If anyone is counting, that makes this this 37th annual New Salem Mountain Festival.  Since New Salem is the little community where I grew up and since I am 37 years old, that means the festival began when I was 9 1/2 months old. I'm almost positive I was there the very first year and I have only missed being there a handful of times in all my 37 years. I absolutely love it and make every effort to travel home every year to be able to be there.

The event is full of memories for me.

 It's where I was allowed to man the Coke Booth at the age of 10.  Now, I'm pretty sure that there was an adult there with me, but in my head. It was me. By myself.  Pouring drinks from the fountain for the masses all my by big grown-up 10 year old self.  

It's where I was introduced to and began to love boiled peanuts To this day, the smell of salty boiling peanuts takes me back there.

It's where I sang with the girls group I was part of at my little home church on Sunday mornings and watched my dad, my uncle, my great-uncle and some cousins sing with the Men's Ensemble each year, too.

It's where I would order pinto beans and cornbread for lunch and a bbq sandwich for supper on Saturday, and Chicken Stew  for lunch on Sunday and sometimes another bbq sandwich for supper that night from the little Food Booth.

It's where I worked said Food Booth (for years) taking orders and helping fill them. I was even allowed as I got older to take the money sometimes.  My little home church, New Salem United Methodist Church cooked all the food and worked the Food Booth every year as a fund raiser. 

It's where the Jr. Fire Department always made and sold Funnel Cakes that I enjoyed at least once while I was there.

It's where I watched the Forester Sisters and the Adkins Family Band play every year. 

It's where I was allowed to run free because there were so many family members and family friends around to watch out for me that I really wasn't running free at all.

It's where I won many a door prize. One, in fact is a piece of pottery that says New Salem on it and makes me smile lovingly whenever I see it.

I could go on and on and on about all the memories I have of this place. But, I won't. Because right now, I'm finishing packing up and getting ready.
When I'm done, Brady and I will head out and pick the girls up early from school and head on over to my Mom's house where she's fixing my all time favorite meal {Pinto Beans, Homemade Macaroni and Cheese, Fried Potatoes and Cornbread}.

Tomorrow the kids and I will get up and go spend the whole day at the festival. I'm sure there will be funnel cakes, bbq sandwiches, chicken stew and even candied apples and cotton candy to be had by all.  I'm sure we will come home with a spider made out of pipe cleaners or a popgun or two.  But, I wouldn't have it any other way.

This festival is part of my heritage, it's part of my childhood an sharing it with my kids just as all the family and friends that I grew up with be doing also is priceless!

So, we're headed out.  Hope you all have a weekend that is full of making memories with your kids if not all the sentiment and nostalgia and family that mine will be.

in HIM-

Disclaimer: To all you New Salem folks reading this: I know that the festival began as the Plum Nelly Festival way before I was ever even thought of and that the heritage goes much
                                                father back that me.  It's part of what I LOVE about where I'm from. Rich, rick mountain
                                                heritage that goes back for lots and lots of years.
                                               Also, look forward to seeing you tomorrow!

1 comment:

Ginger said...

Thanks for making me almost cry! I wish I was coming too! I wish I was going to have Mama's pinto beans & macaroni & cheese! I can do without the chicken stew but I would love to have some BBQ!! Glad you all are going, just wish I was too! Have an extra helping of pintos & macaroni & cheese for me. Love you!!