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Work begins on 2021 Preston County Buckwheat Festival

KINGWOOD – Plans are being made for the 79th Buckwheat Festival — which will be in 2021.

This year would have been the 79th festival, had it not been cancelled by COVID-19.

“We are going to be looking at data as we get closer to the date, and we’ll follow the directions of our health department and state officials,” Buddy Turner, Buckwheat Festival chairman said. “We’ll see if there is a vaccine available by then.”

David Brown, KVFD president, said a meeting is set for the week of Oct. 5 to discuss what can be done, and to “look at possible alternatives for the festival.”

“We’re hopeful and intending to have some kind of festival, but we have to balance it with safety,” he said.

Bill Lindley, vice president and November Committee Chairman, said the committee is waiting to see if the COVID directives given by the governor change in time for next year’s festival.

Turner said Queen Ceres 2020 Gabrielle Wolfe and King Buckwheat 2020 Ryan Wilson are acting as ambassadors for next year’s festival.

“They have been visiting towns around the county,” he said. “Most years people come to the festival. This year we’re trying to take a little bit of the festival to our communities.”

Turner said this year’s festival theme is Vision 2020 Preston County Proud.

Lindley said he contacted other towns that cancelled festivals and found they too were using the designation 2020 this year instead of the festival number.

Both Brown and Lindley said they wanted to thank the volunteers.

“Up until the minute the festival was cancelled the volunteers worked on the project. They are very loyal and we appreciate every one,” Brown said.

“I hope they all come back next year with extra energy,” Lindley said. “Our membership couldn’t do it (Buckwheat Festival) without our volunteers.”

“What we have makes me proud of the volunteers and the young people of the court. Despite not having a festival, and all of the trials and tribulations that we’ve had this year, I’m struck with pride,” Turner said. “The way our citizens and young people have adapted and overcome the challenge that this year has unmercifully given them. It makes me really proud of our volunteers and our fire department, our citizens and our young people and our court. I’m proud of them in the way they have persevered and adapted to an unfortunate circumstance.”