Smiles were everywhere in Occoquan last weekend as the Fall Arts & Crafts Show returned, to the delight of many, said show volunteer Cindy Fithian.
“I’ve had numerous vendors tell me this was not just the best show they’ve had in Occoquan, but that they had the best sales they’ve ever seen,” Fithian said.
“It’s like a big family here in Occoquan, and everyone wanted it to be successful. I think people were so delighted to get back into the twice-a-year ritual,” she added. “People were just happy to be out – you could feel happiness in the air, and it was perfect weather.”
The popular show, which has been around for more than 50 years but was canceled due to COVID-19 in 2020, featured artisan tents lining Occoquan’s main road, Mill Street, all the way to River Mill Park, both Saturday and Sunday.
The park had an addition this year, a beer garden from Water’s End Brewery, and live music throughout both days.
Occoquan Mayor Earnie Porta said the weekend was fantastic. He estimated attendance at close to 10,000 people.
“Vendors and patrons were overwhelmingly positive. The beer garden in River Mill Park was a big success too,” Porta told InsideNoVa. “It was certainly one of our most successful in recent memory.”
He credited the success to show director Julie Little, along with the town’s staff and event volunteers. “We really could not do things like this without our amazing volunteers, so I want to particularly thank them as well as everyone who came out to patronize the show.”
Occoquan is making changes to its spring event, scheduled June 4-5. It will be called RiverFest, with many of the same artisans present, but events and competitions on the Occoquan River will be added.