It was the best day ever!

CulpeperFest 2021, brought to you by our signature sponsor, Novant Health UVA Health System Culpeper Medical Center, and Grand Champion Sponsor Be A Culpeper Local, encompassed to me what Culpeper is all about — communication, cooperation, coordination and caring.

On Thursday, June 10, our area accumulated nearly 10 inches of rain. On Friday morning, June 11, we stood outside at Eastern View High School and made a call that hasn’t been made in 41 years — we postponed CulpeperFest.

I’m going to be completely honest, the decision weighed heavily on me — rescheduling an event and making it successful in a week is a daunting task. 

That’s where the communication comes in. We worked with Culpeper County Public Schools to ensure we could use Eastern View High School on June 18. The Culpeper County Sheriff’s Office, led by Lt. Joe Curtis, was amazing to ensure our traffic needs were met, as there was another major Culpeper event happening that day — the District 14 Little League All-Star opening ceremonies.

That’s where the coordination and cooperation starts. We worked tirelessly with District 14, Culpeper County Parks and Recreation department and Director Andrew Hardy, the Town of Culpeper, VDOT, CCSO and more to make sure that June 18 was a day that we showcased what Culpeper has to offer. In the span of a quarter mile, we had two events that drew more than 3,000 people total into the sports complex! That’s an amazing accomplishment and couldn’t be done without teamwork and coordination. To me, that’s the definition of Culpeper — finding solutions and showcasing our community.

The final “C,” carin, goes out to our committee and volunteers who worked so hard to help us make CulpeperFest a success! Our volunteers, Sandy Conner, Geena Montgomery, Lianna Tayman, Ava Conway, Mary Anne McGovern, Ron, Jack and Grace Warner, Deb Manzari, Tonda Hopkins, Amari Jackson, Emmetri Beane, Johnny Smith, Cecil Starkey, Frank Reaves, Greta Lohr, Sam Kessler, Curtis Hawkins and Ian Chini, were rockstars! They put in countless hours to set up, make sure everything ran smoothly and tear down. They moved and cleaned tables, set up straw bales and hauled trash all night long. We truly couldn’t have done it without them.

Our committee of Curtis Hawkins, Ian Chini, Maria Lischak, Sam Kessler Leigh Snider, Ron Warner and Kim Toone helped us plan and coordinate this successful event. We couldn’t have done it without them.

Thank you to all our vendors for putting in all the time and effort to showcase their businesses, nonprofits and organizations, it truly shows how much everyone cares about Culpeper. 

Of course, I would be remiss without praising our events coordinator Amy Frazier, who pivoted so well after we rescheduled and seamlessly made this year’s CulpeperFest happen one week later than it normally does. The amount of effort that goes in behind the scenes is often not thought about, but there were a hundred vendors to coordinate, dozens of large vehicles to park, musicians scheduled quickly and so much more that had to be accomplished in a week’s time. Amy did it all with a smile on her face and a positive attitude. We at the Chamber are proud to call her our own!

In the end, we did what we set out to accomplish — highlight the best of Culpeper. Finally, I want to thank the community for coming out and enjoying our event.

We love Culpeper, and I hope it showed Friday, June 18!

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