EATON — The Preble County Pork Festival last week called September’s festival “the first financially successful festival in six years,” in a press release wrapping up this year’s event.
In a press release, festival officials said “the Board of Directors, in partnership with RMJG Events, as well as a state grant facilitated by the Preble County Economic Development office, is very proud of the support and work completed with volunteers, vendors, sponsors, and the community at-large.”
“Despite initial news of festival cancellation early in the year, the smoke of pork chops grilling was once again visible in the air at the fairgrounds the third full weekend of September, with tens of thousands of attendees from all over the tri-state area and beyond attending,” the release noted. “Added to this year’s festival was a Friday Night Launch Kickoff event, complete with the launch of three hot air balloons, and musical acts New Frontiers (Journey Tribute Band) and Fleetwood Gold (Fleetwood Mac Tribute Band) entertaining. Similarly, country legend Johnny Lee performed Saturday evening in the grandstands. A fundraising concert by Twitty & Lynn at the Star Theater the Wednesday prior to the festival was a highlight for all who attended the sold-out performance.”
The Pork Festival team estimate well over 100,000 attendees enjoyed the festivities, crafts, and fun, as well as pork and the culinary delights made onsite throughout the weekend, according to the release. A fan-favorite, the smorgasbord, made its return to the festival in 2022, where attendees enjoyed an all-you-can-eat pork feast.
“To enhance the visitor experience, cooking demonstrations by The Cajun Ninja were scheduled throughout the weekend with pork culinary recipes presented. In its new location of Bruner Arena, the Country Store opened for festival goers to purchase fresh meat to take home and enjoy all year round,” the release continued.
“Organizers want to thank the Preble County community and all of the over 964 volunteers for their participation in this year’s festival,” it continued. “Lead sponsors, TimkenSteel, the Preble County CVB and Reid Health also provided tremendous support to the festival.
“The Board of Directors is grateful too for the economic development grant facilitated by the Preble County Development Partnership to provide a loan to the festival to further improve the value of local tourism dollars for the entire county.”
The release continued, “The Preble County Pork Festival is looking forward to its 52nd annual event, scheduled the third full weekend in September – Sept. 16-17, 2023. A new executive team was elected in December, and with the addition of new board members and fresh perspective, the festival is excited to bring pork education, crafts, and delicious pork chops once again to Preble County.”
For additional information and news, including ways individuals, organizations, and businesses can assist the Preble County Pork Festival, visit www.porkfestival.org or follow on Facebook: @PorkFestival.