RiverFest, cosponsored by local radio station 98.1 The River and by non-profit environmental revitalization organization RiverLink, is more than just a fun — and free! — day of water sports, family-friendly events, music, games, vendors, food and drink (all held at French Broad River Park). It’s also RiverLink’s biggest event of the year.
The festival takes place this Saturday, Aug. 14, and it kicks off with a wild raft race. In a press release, RiverLink writes, “There is still time to put together a team and a yacht for RiverLink’s annual “Anything that floats” raft race, one of the many fun activities at RiverFest. RiverLink will allow day-of registration, and those who do not want to construct a vessel can rent watercraft from the Asheville Outdoor Center on the day of the event.
“Because it’s heaps of fun, RiverLink encourages everyone to gather coworkers, friends and family members and create a raft for the yacht race. A panel of local celebrity judges will judge them based on criteria such as Fastest, Most Creative, Green Machine Award, Ugliest, Best Theme, Funniest and Rubber Racer. About the only rule is that your craft must float, and it must be removed from the festival grounds upon completion of the race.”
Not got your sea legs? There’s still plenty to do: The Music Showcase and Competition features local acts. In between bands, check out acts like Asheville Aerial Arts and Baraka Mundi belly dancers. Local restaurants will be serving treats and there’s plenty of friendly competition to be found in volleyball, bocce ball, badminton, Frisbee golf and corn hole.
Plus: “Kids can ride, skate, walk, run and skip in costume with opportunities to win prizes for most creative, cutest and funniest in the Kids Parade.”
• First rafts launch in raft race at 11 a.m.
• Festival begins at noon
• Dog/Kid Parade, 12:15 p.m.
• Fines Creek Flatfooters (clogging), 12:30 p.m.
• Jenna Lindbo (Americana), 1 p.m.
• Asheville Dance Revolution (dance students), 1:30 p.m.
• Peace Jones (funk, jam), 2 p.m.
• Belly Dancing, 2:30 p.m.
• Leigh Glass Band (blues rock), 3 p.m.
• Asheville Aerial Arts (aerialists), 3:30 p.m.
• Grammer School (indie-rock), 4 p.m.
• Ralph Roddenbery Band (roots rock), 5 p.m.