Rooster Day returns April 8, promising more activities, more artisans and craftsmen, more silent and live auction items, more music and more fun for the whole family.
The Marengo County Historical Society fund-raiser started last year in hopes of raising money to help preserve the group’s historic homes and pay for the society’s activities during the year.
What organizers didn’t expect was the enthusiastic embrace by Demopolis area residents who found the idea appealed to their sense of humor.
Scores of volunteers stepped up to help plan and carry out the event. This year the number may grow into the hundreds who are pitching in to make the day successful.
“We are trying to keep Rooster Day exciting by adding something new each year,” said Lisa Compton, chairman. “We want to involve everyone because Rooster Day truly is a community event.”
Brewster the Rooster, a six-foot chicken advertising Rooster Day, is again making visits to area businesses that sign up to become Rooster Boosters. The idea caught on last year and proved so popular that supporters are lining up to have the feathered friend visit their places of business for a few days.
Brewster is being joined by his very big brother. A 20-foot rooster sits at the intersection of Cedar Street and U.S. Highway 80 East welcoming visitors to the city.
Built by the employees of the Demopolis horticulture department, the colorful two-story bird now is the subject of a Name that Rooster contest which ends March 8. Anyone who wants to enter can go to the Rooster Day website at <roosterdaydemopolis.com>.
Barbara Blevins and her crew will move the big bird to the Public Square, the site of the Rooster Day activities, for the event.
School groups, athletic teams and friends coming together to add their talents to promote Rooster Day and encourage its success. “We are also encouraging clubs and groups to partner with Brewster the Rooster for fundraising,” Compton continued. Already the Demopolis High School cross country team and the local Eastern Star Chapter of the Masonic Lodge had Brewster helping their special events.
“We have added more publicity for businesses in the form of website advertising for businesses offering any kind of Rooster Day special,” said Compton. Business owners who have special promotions or offer coupons in association with Rooster Day can be post them on the Rooster Day website.
The Cock’s Crow Run, a 5K race that kicks off Rooster Day, is adding a little something extra this year for the whole family. To encourage entrants to pick up their race packets early, a one-mile Fun Run will be held the night before.
After the Fun Run, an outdoor movie will be shown and hot dogs will be provided for the families that attend. There is no charge for the Fun Run.
The Cock’s Crow Run begins at 8 a.m. on Rooster Day. Entertainment on the festival stage will keep non-runners entertained while the race is going on.
Instead of door prizes, entrants will be signed up to take part in a draw-down. All runners get a ticket with their packet that could win a cash prize of $150. Information and entry forms for the 5K are on the Rooster Day website.
The Public Square will be filled with activities beginning at 9 a.m. Booths will be set up for Alabama artists and craftsmen to show and sell their wares. Local restaurants and organizations will offer food for those attending the festival.
A large section of the park will be devoted to activities for children, including a petting zoo, crafts, games and a rope bridge constructed by Boy Scout Troop 41.
Musical acts and demonstrations will be part of the entertainment on the festival stage during the day until the fair closes at 4 p.m. If weather permits, the 4H Chick Chain will demonstrate how to wash and blow-dry chickens for competition.
Once the downtown events end, however, Rooster Day continues with the Rooster Auction at Lyon Hall, one of the home museums maintained by the MCHS. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. for the event that will feature both silent and live auctions.
Interspersed with the auction will be music by the Rexton Lee Band on the Foster Farms Fowl Play Stage. Music and dancing will continue until 11 p.m.
Compton encouraged anyone who wants to become a Rooster Booster or ask questions about any of the activities to log on to the Rooster Day website.
“I hope everyone will support and come out to enjoy this unique event that makes our region special,” she said.
For more information on Rooster Day, visit the website or call Compton at 251-510-0582.