I’m going to say it: It was freakin’ hot. I think the entire country sizzled a week ago Saturday, the day of the Turkey Palooza. South Carolina was no exception, reaching a near record temp of 106 F.
Yep, I really had to go in the dunking booth, which actually felt pretty good on that hotter-than-the-Devil’s-house day. You’re witnessing the split-second before my first dunk.
But we had fun — and that’s not just something I repeated to convince myself it’s true. The Turkey Palooza proved to be a good time, and I could see it in the sweat-speckled faces of everyone there.
An estimated 2,500 folks came to the Wild Turkey Center for food, games, music and — the big daddy attraction — fireworks. Was the NWTF ready for them? I could say no sweat, but with the Easy Bake Oven heat, that would be a lie.
It took a lot of hard work and 140 volunteers to pull off what quickly became more like a festival. Remember, these are some of the same folks who put on a convention and sport show for more than 35,000 every year. We know how to host a first-rate event, if I say so myself.
Here are some images to prove it. Just click on the first one to take you through a slide show. If you’re a Keepin’ Up With Karen subscriber (thank you!) and reading this off the email that was automatically sent to you, then click on the blog web link to view the slideshow.
Here are two of the angels sent from Marble Slab Creamery who dished up coolness in several yummy flavors.
It’s all fun and games until the photographer loses an eye. There were several activities that put the fun in fundraising at the Turkey Palooza, like the popular Chufa Chunk.
Alex Rutledge was there in spirit (and cardboard) inviting folks to the Edgefield (S.C.) Chapter’s Hunting Heritage Banquet. He’s scheduled to be there this November. In the meantime, his mug served as a backdrop to one of several online contests during the Palooza.
I’m a Chevy girl, so it was cool to see the new models of cars and trucks on display, thanks to the Chevy Street Team. I may be rockin’ a Traverse down the road, but I have the spirit of a Corvette (and the speeding tickets to prove it).
NWTF Chief Conservation Officer James Earl Kennamer, Ph.D., is probably making mental notes as he plunges into the dunk tank. Those are two of his employees playing dirty pool (pun definitely intended).
Highway 104, a band out of Evans, Ga., rocked the stage at Turkey Palooza, pumping out hits from the likes of Tom Petty and Skynyrd.
That’s me and Mac McQuown, the Walking Marine. He's walking the capitol steps of all 50 states (that’s more than 15,000 miles) to support wounded, fallen and homeless veterans. Mac just happened to be in town. Keep up with him at www.facebook.com/MACMCQUOWNWALKING.
More than 500 people wandered through the NWTF’s Winchester Museum that Saturday. They may have been trying to escape the heat, but I’m pretty sure they left with a better understanding of our mission.
It’s a slide jam! Kids of all ages plunged down an inflatable water slide, as their parents looked on with a tinge of jealousy.
Local groups raised money and awareness of causes through demonstrations and by volunteering, including the Wardlaw Academy Shooting Team, First Tee of Aiken and Edgefield Area Clay Guild.
What fireworks show is complete without glow-in-the-dark accessories? Turkey Shoppe was on hand to sell toddler-tantrum-inducing trinkets, Turkey Palooza t-shirts and other NWTF merchandise.
BOOM! Pop…pop…pop, pop, pop, pop. The fireworks were the grand finale to a great day. My 3-year-old described them as “Whoa!”