Foothills Fall Festival brings millions into Maryville

Foothills Fall Festival brings millions of dollars into Maryville's economy

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The Foothills Fall Festival kicked off Friday. Arts and crafts and food booths are located on Broadway Avenue in Maryville. The Foothills Fall Festival kicked off Friday. Arts and crafts and food booths are located on Broadway Avenue in Maryville.
The main concerts will be held behind the old courthouse. This year's headline act is Rascal Flatts The main concerts will be held behind the old courthouse. This year's headline act is Rascal Flatts
Bill Womac, the owner of Boyd Thomas Clothing on Broadway Avenue, says he looks forward to the festival each year. Bill Womac, the owner of Boyd Thomas Clothing on Broadway Avenue, says he looks forward to the festival each year.
The assistant manager at Barley's, which opened earlier this year, feels the festival will help boost restaurant sales. The assistant manager at Barley's, which opened earlier this year, feels the festival will help boost restaurant sales.

By JOSH AULT
6 News Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - If you are looking for somewhere to enjoy this weekend's beautiful weather, you might want to head to Blount County where the annual Foothills Fall Festival kicked off Friday.

The festival is located in downtown Maryville. The main concerts will be held behind the old courthouse. This year's headline act is Rascal Flatts.    

Arts and crafts and food booths are set up all along Broadway Avenue in downtown.     

Festival organizers say the event brings millions of dollars into the local economy.     

"We know some of local business have told us that they do at least 30 percent more business during this festival weekend than any other, so we feel like it's a pretty significant impact," said festival director Jane Groff.

Bill Womac, the owner of Boyd Thomas Clothing on Broadway Avenue, says he looks forward to the festival each year.

"We have a higher amount of traffic for three days, starting Friday at noon through six Sunday evening," said Womac.

The assistant manager at Barley's, which opened earlier this year, feels the festival will help boost restaurant sales.

"Just the amount of people," said assistant manager Adam Warren. "It's a little difficult being downtown. There's not a lot of parking, so it's hard to get huge crowds down here. When you have this many people already down here, it makes it easier on us."    

Festival organizers say they try to attract even more people to the event each year.

"We've actually advertised outside the market this year," said Groff. "We are getting a lot of interest from outside the area."          

Even the government shutdown is not hurting the festival.

Organizers feel since the national park is still closed, they might see even bigger crowds this year from families looking for other things to do.      

"Most of the hotels are full on Saturday," said Groff. "We are having a hard time finding those rooms."

Along with Rascal Flatts, this year's concerts will also feature Blues Travelers, Lynyard Skynard, and American Idol contestant Janelle Arthur.      

More than 500 tickets are still available. Tickets are only available at the gate.

If you do not want to fight the traffic in downtown Maryville, they will be offering a free shuttle service from Foothills Mall to the festival.   

If you do not want to go to the concerts, all the arts and food areas, plus the children's Adventureland are free to the public.

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