Businesses excited for GO Fest to bring outdoor adventures, thousands of visitors to downtown Roanoke

Roanoke Valley News

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — Are you ready for fun and excitement? Starting Friday morning, the Star City will become a hot spot for adventure that the whole family can enjoy because GO Fest is heading to downtown Roanoke for the first time in 10 years!

For three days, GO Fest will welcome thousands of people to the heart of Roanoke for the free outdoor festival, which will offer entertainment for everyone between Elmwood Park and the City Market Building.

“The streets will be filled with all your GO Fest favorites including the BMX stunt show, lumberjack show, Ultimate Air Dogs, climbing walls, demo pool, fly casting pond, silent disco, scavenger hunts, beer relay, outdoor vendors, kids’ bike races, group runs and rides, and more,” said Kelly Brammer, the special events supervisor for Roanoke Parks and Recreation.

For the most part, festival hours are 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 15; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 16; and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 17. However, there are several exceptions, with some events starting as early as 7 a.m. or going as late as 11 p.m.

In addition, a California-based band, “Vintage Trouble,” will be headlining on the Haley Toyota stage on Saturday for one of the only events at GO Fest that costs money.

WFXR’s Hazelmarie Anderson also spoke with the co-owners of Roanoke Outfitting & Adventures, Preston Pettengill and Travis Overstreet, about water safety and what eventgoers can experience during the outdoor weekend festival.

While many people are excited for new adventures that await them, small business owners are excited for the new people who will walk through their doors amid GO Fest.

“Anytime there is something to attract new people down here, we all benefit from it and it’s wonderful,” said Roanoke business owner, Katy Newberry.

More than 900 businesses call downtown Roanoke home, including Newberry, who opened Gypsy Palooza Too seven years ago and her second store, Artsy June, last year.

Newberry says that small businesses like hers welcome events like GO Fest because in addition to attracting new potential customers to the area, they also put money back into the community and help keep “mom and pop shops” open.

Meanwhile, as a way to participate in this year’s GO Fest, Roanoke restaurants and breweries are letting you take your alcoholic beverage to-go.

For more information about the GO Fest activities, performers, and schedule, click here.

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