COLUMBIA – Last year saw the cancellation of the 29th annual Scuppernong River Festival as a result of crowd and distance restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year organizers are looking forward to a bigger and better festival than ever.

As planning is beginning for the Saturday, October 9, 2021 festival, Columbia and Tyrrell County residents are invited to become part of the planning committee and to share ideas on how to make the festival one to remember.

The committee meets monthly, 4th Thursday, 11 a.m. at the meeting room in the Columbia Municipal Building, 103 Main Street. Until COVID meeting restrictions are lifter, planning meetings will be held by way of teleconference.

Opportunities for committee volunteers are numerous and varied. From music and entertainment to concessions, water activities and publicity, committee members will plan every detail of the day-long downtown street festival. There are never enough ideas or individuals to help. Just mark your calendar, show up and offer to assist.

To let the committee know you want to help and to secure meeting call-in numbers call 252-796-2781 during regular weekday business hours.

The Scuppernong River Festival stretches the length of Main Street and includes the downtown streets and waterfront areas as well as the Columbia High school campus. More than 8,000 persons flock to the town of Columbia for food, fun and entertainment. Festivities begin with a parade down Main Street.

There will be water activities on the Scuppernong River and along the waterfront for all ages and there will be amusement rides for children. Music and entertainment will be staged at multiple locations.

A fireworks show that organizers hope will be larger than ever will take place over the river, beginning at nightfall. There will be an 8 p.m. concert in front of the Tyrrell County Courthouse with a band to be determined.

Staff writer Miles Layton can be reached at