2019 Award of Merit - Best Downtown Special Event or Event Series
Forest City, NC
Forest City hosted the first annual Cherry Bounce Festival on their new downtown Pavilion on Park Square this past June.
This lively event referenced a unique element of Forest City’s heritage and was named for Rutherford County moonshiner Amos Owens’ special Cherry Bounce moonshine.
In the late 19th century, Owens – a colorful Civil war veteran – hosted exuberant annual spring gatherings at his local home to celebrate the cherry harvest. Thus, the Cherry Bounce festival was a unique opportunity for Forest City to pay homage to the history of the area by creating their own annual tradition.
The 2019 Cherry Bounce festival was well-attended, with over 1,700 people attending from local areas and surrounding states. The town hosted several local and regional bands and brought in food and art vendors. Josh Owens, famous host of the Discovery Channel’s Moonshine program, attended the event and held a meet-and-greet with local fans.
Bars and food establishments created cherry-flavored drinks and dishes, while non-food merchants also participated with contests and special discounts and sales.
The inaugural Cherry Bounce festival was a wonderful opportunity for Forest City to bring forth community connection and excitement through an aspect unique to their local history.
Congratulations to this Small Town Main Street community for its 2019 award.
In the category of PROMOTION, Best Downtown Special Event or Event Series recognizes outstanding and creative downtown events.
An Award of Merit is presented to: Explore Forest City, Town of Forest City, The Agency Group, Artifacturing, LLC, Foundation Performing Arts and Conference Center, Banfield Gallery, Russell Wicker, WNCW 88.7 FM, and WGWG Stream for The Cherry Bounce Festival