Azalea Festival President makes last minute preparations for the big event
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Coordinating the Azalea Festival requires a huge community effort. President Erica Mearns relies on all the festival volunteers. There’s about a thousand volunteers this year. She says coordinating the festival is like planning a wedding. You have to map out every single detail, but you have to expect the unexpected. One thing she can expect? A ringing phone. When you're the president of the festival it rings constantly.

One more thing is for sure. Erica Mearns is go-go-go. She was constantly on the move on Monday. She’s trying to make sure everything is perfect. Fortunately the weather this year just might be perfect for the festival.

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Does the city/county put any money into the Azalea Festival?? if so..this is a travesty especially when the budget is millions of dollars in the RED and you cant find money to keep teachers on the payroll but you can find money to put on a float filled affair???

is there no mention of the festival date on any of the tv or radio advertisements? You would think that would be the first fact they mention. Plus It help me plan on when to stay away from downtown.

Sunday I decided to walk downtown and along the river to enjoy the spring arriving. Well...while walking up the street where they start the tours I was so taken back by the stench and smell. I guess from the night before people from the bars think nothing of urinating on the sidewalks. I had to hold my breath to get to the next store. With all the tourists around I just wonder what were they thinking. I think the owners of the shops and bars should be responsible and amongst themselves should hose down the streets. They want business then this will pay off. I feel sorry for the visitors. Hey the drunks aren't going to stop doing what they do best so something else has to give. Now the festival is arriving and nature is blooming. Good luck shop owners. I would rather smell spring in the air so I will be staying away from town.

Thanks for all of your efforts! I'm sure everything will turn out great.