Along with providing family-oriented entertainment, such as 26 carnival rides, arts-and-crafts vendors, musical entertainment and a fireworks display at dusk Sept. 3, Pioneer Days will serve as a fundraiser for Allatoona Charities Inc. This year’s offering is expected to raise $30,000 to help those in need in southern Bartow, northern Cobb, eastern Paulding and western Cherokee counties.
“All the money we make, we put back into the community,” said Dallas Godfrey, event chairman for Pioneer Days and president of Allatoona Charities, which has been presenting the event for 33 years. “We’re a small group and what we do is immediate help. We’re not subsidized by any government grants or anything like that. We have this one event each year and what money we make out of it, we buy groceries for people in need. We’ll pay up to a certain amount on a light bill or a gas bill if we deem them worthy of it because we go through and we investigate and check them out and make sure they’re not telling us anything they shouldn’t be telling us, that type of stuff.
“And in the past we’ve bought fans for elderly on a case by case basis, we have bought like a little window air unit for elderly people. It’s very rewarding. Unfortunately, we have people that are struggling now ... some are struggling more than others. It makes you feel like you are putting back into the community ... [to] help somebody like that.”
To be based at Sam Smith Park, 1155 Douthit Ferry Road in Cartersville, Pioneer Days will be Friday, Aug. 31, from 4 to 11 p.m.; Saturday, Sept. 1, from noon to 11 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 2, from noon to 11 p.m.; and Monday, Sept. 3, from noon to 10 p.m.
Admission to Pioneer Days will be $5 per person, but there will be no charge for children 11 and younger. Daily wrist bands will be sold for $20, granting individuals unlimited rides. To obtain more information about Pioneer Days, visit www.pioneerdaysga.com.
For many Bartow residents, Pioneer Days will kick off the fall festival season. With a bevy of offerings scattered throughout the county, the next few months will be overflowing with tasty treats, carnival rides, and arts and crafts vendors.
“We do really have a great variety,” said Regina Wheeler, deputy director for the Cartersville-Bartow County Convention & Visitors Bureau. “We’re very blessed with a lot of unique locations from the public parks, like Sam Smith Park, to religious venues to historic venues.
“So that really gives us great settings for great fall festivals. And people look forward to these throughout the year. They keep them marked on their calendar and most of them are annual to the weekend every year. ... It does draw people from all over northwest Georgia. And we look forward to having a new reason for people to come and visit.”