Royall looks back on 'wall-to-wall' fest

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It has been two weeks now since the massive crowd of the 36th annual North Carolina Pickle Festival left town and attendees took their made memories with them.

It also left breathing room, something Town Manager Jammie Royall said was getting hard to find during the height of the popular event.

Royall said by mid-morning on Saturday, the festival had drawn “wall to wall” people.

“I have never in my 17 years seen anything like it, and the thing is we did not have any problems whatsoever. There were three incidents of children getting separated from their parents, but it was resolved quickly,” Royall added. 

“Overall, I was really proud to be a part of it.”

He said he estimates the crowd between 40,000 and 50,000.

Other festival officials did not use numbers, but said it was the biggest crowd they have ever seen.

There were several emergency evacuation locations designated for the event.

“The way things are now there had been some things needed that we did not have in place. I am not saying we have been doing it wrong, but there were some issues to be resolved, and we took care of it,” said the town manager.

Royall said four locations for emergency evacuation had been set up “just in case.”

But they weren’t needed in this case.

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