Three Rivers Festival

Davian Crane of Fairmont has some fun with bubbles as Bobby Fetty of  Fairmont, left, and grandma Kimberly Starrett of Fairmont watch at the West Virginia Three Rivers Festival Saturday in Fairmont.

FAIRMONT — The West Virginia Three Rivers Festival came to a soggy close Saturday.

Rain moved in, but it didn’t dampen the spirits of festival-goers who were having fun at the annual event.

With his face painted to look like a tiger, Davian Crane of Fairmont was making bubbles with a toy as his grandma, Kimberly Starrett of Fairmont, watched.

“We’re enjoying it,” she said. “We just got here.”

She said it was Davian’s third day in a row at the festival and she liked “seeing a smile on his face.”

Kelli Bland of Fairmont, who brought her daughter, got caught in a downpour and went back home to dry out, but she came back and was sitting under an umbrella watching the band Moonlight Drive from Preston County. The rain eventually subsided and held off long enough for fireworks on Saturday night.

According to Mike Swearingen, president of the festival board, attendance was great for the first two days.

“The rain came, obviously, but I think we had a record Thursday and a record Friday night, and we’re still hoping for tonight,” he said.

He thought good weather on Thursday and Friday brought everyone out for the festival. He also thought the entertainment was “very good” on Friday night when Ryan Cain and the Ables and Rick K and the Allnighters performed.

On Saturday, the pepperoni roll eating contest was held.

This year, local contestants were used for the contest rather than professional eaters, he said.

“People don’t realize, but eating is a professional sport there, so we tried to do something different and brought out locals. It went fairly well. We’re hoping next year to grow that.”

Kenny Freeland was the winner, eating 8 1/2 pepperoni rolls in 10 minutes.

Ben Rogers came in second, eating 7 1/2 in the same amount of time.

Eric Hrin can be reached at (304) 367-2549.

Eric Hrin can be reached at 304-367-2549, or

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