GEORGETOWN COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – The Atalaya Arts and Crafts Festival returned this weekend with safety measures in place after it was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic .
Attendees had the chance to enjoy the sounds of bluegrass music while viewing art exhibits ranging from canvases and sculptures.
The festival was held at Huntington Beach State Park in Murrells Inlet, where the old castle is located. Thousands of people flooded the event hoping to find some entertainment as the pandemic continues.
This year, the event was held outdoors to ensure everyone’s safety. Many artists came from all over the United States, but a local artist was fortunate enough to participate.
“Everyone seems to enjoy it so much that it’s easy for people to play and learn to play,” said Karen Edgar, a resident of Myrtle Beach.
Edgar creates lifelike portraits but is known for her cigar box guitars.
“I have people from years past who will just come and say hello. We see people from out of town and local people, ”Edgar said.
Park manager Brenda Magers says attendance has increased by 40%. With crowds flocking, the park has enforced COVID safety measures like social distancing.
“We’ve moved an entire section outside so that the food, the outdoor music and some of our performers are outside the building,” Magers said. “It gives a lot of people more space. All performers are six feet apart and we have hand sanitizer for all entrances. “
The event comes as COVID-19 remains a reality statewide.
A spokesperson for Conway Medical Center said on Friday they had 39 COVID patients and 35 of them are unvaccinated.
But despite COVID, many locals are trying to smell the fresh air and enjoy an outdoor festival.
“As a park manager, I love to see people enjoying the park and they are smiling and it’s just a chill out event,” Magers said.
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