Woolly Worm Festival
The 29th annual Woolly Worm Festival was byfar the biggest ever. Saturdays ticket sales totaled 11,000 with an estimated 12,000 at the event including guests, vendors, and volunteers. 1456 worms were raced in 79 heats during the weekend. The Festival is sponsored by the Avery Banner Elk Chamber of Commerece and the Banner Elk Kiwanis club. A portion of the proceeds are used by Kiwanis for numerous children's charities and projects in Avery county.
"Jerry Garcia", a woolly worm owned by Katie Berry of Boone NC, won the 29th "Running of the Worms" at the Woolly Worm Festival in Banner Elk. Katie was assisted by Meghan and Lauren Southworth of Greensboro, NC. Katie shared the $1075 winnings with her two helpers.
"Jerry Garcia's" forecast for winter is:
Week 1 - Cold & Snowy
Week 2 - Cold & light snow
Week 3 - Cold & Snowy
Week 4 - Cold & Snowy
Weeks 5-11 - Seasonably cool but no snow
Weeks 12-13 - Cold & light snow
"Hurricane", trained by Michael Holland, was the winning woolly worm in the Sunday Races. Michael took home $500 from the win. Michael was the grand prize winner three years ago. And yes, he said he did put the $1000 grand prize three years ago in the bank saving for college--a bright young man! To the left is a photo of Michael after his win in 2003.