PARKERSBURG - City Park was busy late Thursday as volunteers and vendors were getting ready for the 17th annual Mid-Ohio Valley Multicultural Festival to open at 6 p.m. today.
Rick Rubin, president of the Mid-Ohio Valley Multicultural Festival Board of Directors, was busy helping to set up areas for booths in the International Boulevard area.
Rubin said the area is set up as an education area where individuals and groups from the Mid-Ohio Valley will exhibit artifacts, maps, posters, music and other things from their country of origin. Some of the countries will be Uzbekistan, Romania, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Ireland, India and China.
Doran Mitchell, left, and Angela Mitchell put up a sign for their booth at the Mid-Ohio Valley Multicultural Festival in City Park. (Photo by Jeffrey Saulton)
Rubin said the festival seems to have more vendors signed up this year.
"We've got more than normal because it filled faster than it usually does," he said. "I guess it's because everyone knows how successful the festival has been."
Rubin said that's good news for the festival.
"When this happens the word gets out this is a good festival," he said.
Tony Brown, festival treasurer, was working Thursday on setting up plants for the entrances to the International Boulevard.
"We borrowed all this from Greenleaf Landscapes," Brown said. "We have 44 plants to dress up the ends of the International Boulevard."
Angela and Doran Mitchell, of Angela's Abstract Body Art, of St. Albans, W.Va., were setting up their booth. They will be part of the festival for a sixth year.
Angela Mitchell said they do the face painting and temporary air brush tattoos.
"We also do air brush makeup," she said. "It's the traditional type face painting using sponges or brushes and the air brush makeup face painting."
Jim Smith of SGS Sound and Lighting, of Parkersburg, said his company has been part of every Multicultural Festival except two.
"I was here in 1996 but I wasn't here in 1997 and 1998," he said. "We have three systems here, the main stage, the pavilion and the storytelling tent."
Smith said it takes about eight hours to set up the festival's sound system. On the main stage he set up 24 lights for a total of 600 watts.
Events scheduled for the festival are: