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No more competing festivals in Oak Ridge in June?

20110618114917There’s good news for everyone who has been saying they hope the Lavender Festival and Secret City Festival will be held on different weekends in the future (as happened this year) instead of competing on the same days (as happened for most of the Secret City Festival’s history). In 2014, the Secret City Festival will be on June 13 and 14, and the Lavender Festival will be the following Saturday, June 21, in Jackson Square.

Actually, this is good news for the whole community — more people will participate in more festival activities, vendors will have more opportunities to sell their wares, volunteers won’t have to try to be two places at once, etc., etc.



  1. Nancy England says:

    When I was director of Music Arts, we participated in the Secret City Festival (at first, the Azalea Festival, and then Mayfest) since the very first one, which was probably attended by a couple hundred people. As a result, I was never available to go to the Lavender Festival. The closest I got was getting a leftover tub of Waldek’s Lavender ice cream at Razzleberry’s. I’m glad the two events are separated! Way to go!!

  2. Is this just next year or a permanent thing? I heard while they normally were on the same weekend, every few years they would not be.
    Thanks for keeping us in the loop!

  3. Ellen Smith says:

    I’m pretty sure this is a deliberate change, David. I haven’t been involved in the decisions for either of these festivals, so I can’t be sure.

    When the event that is now Secret City Festival moved from May to June, it was scheduled on the same weekend as Lavender Festival (which had chosen its dates to coincide with the flowering of the lavender plant). Secret City Festival organizers have insisted this was a good thing because they theorized that spill-over attendance from their festival would benefit Lavender Festival. This year, the scheduling formulas did result in different dates for the two festivals, and the big turnout for Lavender Festival made it clear that this spill-over-benefit theory wasn’t valid. It’s my understanding that the two festivals are now being deliberately scheduled for separate weekends.

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