Williams Station Day returns

Published 3:27 pm Friday, October 24, 2014

Tom and Missie Tschida deliver the Williams Station Day train down Owens Street toward Pensacola Ave. on Friday afternoon. The annual festival kicks off Saturday morning at 8 a.m.

Tom and Missie Tschida deliver the Williams Station Day train down Owens Street toward Pensacola Ave. on Friday afternoon. The annual festival kicks off Saturday morning at 8 a.m.

Williams Station Day might have an overall theme of the railroad and its importance to Atmore, but Saturday’s annual festival is also designed to “offer something for everyone.”

This year’s event is the 23rd annual Williams Station Day. The name of the festival comes from Atmore’s original town name of “Williams Station,” which arose from the location’s importance as a train stop.

The day’s events kick off with the William Station Day 5-K run at 8 a.m. The opening ceremony will be held starting at 9 a.m., in front of the Atmore Area YMCA building.

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The ceremony will feature a presentation of the colors by members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion posts, and local Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts. The Rev. Michael Wilson, pastor of Mt. Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church, will provide the opening prayer, and Mary Beth Lancaster will perform the national anthem.

At 9:15 a.m., Atmore Major Jim Staff will read a proclamation declaring the festival open, and chamber president Anne Hetzel will welcome everyone. The Poarch Band of Creek Indians’ tribal princesses will be recognized at 9:25 a.m., and the opening ceremony will conclude at 9:30 a.m. with the release of balloons in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October.

The main stage, located in front of the Atmore Area YMCA, will feature several different entertainment acts throughout the day. The headline performer is the “Alabama Blues Women,” who will hit the stage from noon to 2 p.m. Down Home Bluegrass will perform from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The main stage’s entertainment starts with the Northview High School dance team, who will perform from 9:30 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. after the conclusion of the opening ceremony. Twirl Time will perform starting at 10:30 a.m. and talented magician Gary Ledbetter will perform some of his magic at 2 p.m.

There will likely be other musical acts who will perform on stage throughout the day, as well. All times are tentatively scheduled and subject to change.

Along Pensacola Avenue, from approximately its intersection with Craig Street to the intersection with Owens Street, there will be a row of vendors and food booths offering a variety of unique crafts and tasty concessions. There will also be children’s activities, including pony rides and miniature trains.

The Atmore Public Library tent will feature Ledbetter, who will perform at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Ledbetter has been a magician for more than 30 years and has traveled world-wide to perform his craft. He was a fixture at last year’s Williams Station Day and is making a return visit by popular demand, according to Vickery.

The game “Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader” will be held on the stage at 11:15 a.m. and 1:15 p.m., and there will also be presentations throughout the day to students who a the book-writing contest that was recently held in local schools.
The classic car show will once again be held, and there will be a hayride to take festival goers to and from the show. Miniature trains will be displayed inside the YMCA building, and there will also be classic antique tractors and farm equipment on display outside.

Organizers have been working hard for months to be sure this Williams Station Day is the best that it can be. Come out and meet old friends, and make new ones, at this year’s Williams Station Day on Saturday, Oct. 25.