Newspaper

Event season is well underway in Cullman with the recently completed Bloomin’ Festival, Senior Shindig and Strawberry Festival, followed this week by the first Major League Fishing's (MLF) Bass Pro Tour Phoenix Boats Stage Five.

Attendance has been outstanding at all these events. This past Saturday, the Strawberry Festival, the state's oldest and celebrating 80 years, set a modern record with more than 20,000 people, including a large crowd remaining for the headline concert by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

MLF's decision to hold a major tournament at Smith Lake, with the after-fishing show at the Depot Park side of Arnold Street, is drawing national and international attention to Cullman as fishing fans follow the daily competition via a live stream. The tournament brought 80 anglers, support staff and families to our community for the six-day event.

All these events provide a vital punch to the economy, from sales to lodging tax, while the exposure as host is immeasurable.

Before the week is over, another large group of visitors will arrive for a state high school track meet for 1A. 2A and 3A schools held at Cullman High School.

At month end, more excitement will happen with Rock the South, May 31-June 1, and the beginning of 2nd Fridays downtown.

The planning for these events has been outstanding, from St. Bernard’s staff and volunteers, the Cullman County Commission on Aging, Cullman Parks, Recreation & Sports Tourism, city and county governments and many others who give time to ensure our community is recognized and grows.

It’s great to live in a community that holds great events and welcomes visitors with open arms – here’s a tip of the hat to all those involved for making it happen.

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