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March 14, 2011
Press Release: Martinsville Bulletin

Monday, March 14, 2011

By DEBBIE HALL - Bulletin Staff Writer

Strong winds lifted kites high into the air above Jack Dalton Park on Saturday during the Piedmont Kite Festival.

The winds were sometimes challenging for those on the ground.

Susan Elgin of Martinsville, who was at the festival with granddaughter Olivia Fisher, 3, said Olivia's "kite was pulling so hard, it was about to pull her up into the air."

Even so, the two enjoyed their outing.

"It was nice to get outdoors and have some fun. We've been inside all winter," Elgin said.

"This is our first time here," she added, saying she also brought grandson Nicholas Fisher, 6. Both youngsters' parents are Melissa Elgin and Bill Fisher, Susan Elgin said.

Nicholas' kite "kept doing a nose-dive. He gave up on his," Elgin said.

Leanne Wood of Martinsville attended with her nephew, Aaron Wood, 7, and niece, Elizabeth Wood, 5.

The children's parents are John and Laura Wood of Woolwine.

"We came last year and really enjoyed it. I thought we'd give it a try" on Saturday, Leanne Wood said.

"There are a lot more activities" this year than last, she added.

Kite building supplies lined an area in a picnic shelter at the park. Youngsters also could visit a "Bubble Station" or one of several displays featuring information about the Civil Air Patrol and NASA.

A group of musicians played washboards and more traditional instruments during the event.

Sherry Custer of Martinsville attended with her granddaughter, 4-year-old Cheyenne Eldridge, daughter of Brandi Custer and Curtis Eldridge.

Cheyenne's Pixie Fairy kite broke shortly after the event began, but the two had no plans to leave.

"We are enjoying it," Custer said.

The kite festival was sponsored by the Virginia Museum of Natural History through the Martinsville-Henry County Community Nature Initiative and in partnership with the Henry County Parks and Recreation Department.

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