To honor Columbia Coun-ty's namesake, the Renaissance Festival will step aside this year for a Columbus Day Festival.
The festival will feature hot-air balloon rides and treats made by the Augusta Italian-American Club from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday at the Memorial Gardens behind the Columbia County Library. Admission is free.
Last year, Columbus Day festivities were included as part of the Renaissance Festival.
Instead of the Renaissance-based festival, county officials decided to bring fire performers, a magician, and other performers and vendors to complement the Columbus Day weekend festivities.
"We wanted to make the festival more family-fun oriented," said Liz Stockstill, a county community events specialist.
There will be arts and crafts vendors and a "monster mural" patrons are encouraged to paint.
"We tried this (the festival) last year and we really loved it," said RuthAnn Vericella, of the Italian-American Club.
Vericella said the menu will include traditional Italian items such as meatball sandwiches, pizza and cannolis.
Arts vendors also will be on hand to show their wares.
"I enjoy doing Columbia County events," said Betsy Borgatti, of the Artists' Guild of Columbia County. "They always get a nice crowd of people, and sometimes they buy pottery, which is always nice."
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.