Downtown Wilmington's riverfront was rocking this weekend as thousands of people packed Water Street for the annual Riverfest. What started years ago as a small event has blossomed into one of the city's biggest events. “Riverfest started 31 years ago with very few volunteers, a couple of people downtown, and its just grown into this huge festival. We probably bring in 100,000 people to downtown in early October,” said Riverfest Chair Sunny Satow. There was something for everybody at this festival. Some of the events this year included numerous acts on the main stage with all types of music, there was a two day skateboarding competition that attracted hundreds of onlookers, a visiting historic ship, the Meka II, plenty of games and fun for the kids, and of course, food. Even this year with the economy being down, the turnout was more than organizers could have hoped for. “It was very surprising. We weren't really sure how this year was going to shake out. We've had record arts and crafts vendors and food vendors,” said Satow. “Its been absolutely fabulous, we couldn't ask for any more. And our sponsors have continued to support us as they always have, and its just been wonderful.” In fact, this year may have even brought more people than ever before. “I think we've had record crowds this year. The weather's been wonderful, its brought a lot of people from out of town who have come to the festival this year. Everybody seems to have had a great time,” Satow added. Proceeds from the festival go toward scholarships for the marine sciences program at Cape Fear Community College.
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