Volunteers run the world.
We all know kids benefit from local community sports programs, whether they play on school teams or little league teams, Y teams or rec teams, church teams or organized groups. On the field and on the bench, these uniformed teammates are learning baseball or softball, of course, but they are also learning teamwork, perseverance, sportsmanship and endurance.
And you know who else is learning alongside of them? Their parents. The adults on the bleachers cheering them on, rain or shine.
It’s a team effort, from the coaches to the athletes to the parents to the volunteers. It doesn’t take long to realize that winning and losing isn’t the only thing happening in our local sports programs.
One active group in our community leading the charge for the value and importance of team youth sports is the Travelers Rest Youth Association. (TRYA)
The Travelers Rest Youth Association is a non-profit organization providing athletic opportunities for our local children and the TR community. One of the organization’s main tasks is to recruit positive role models to serve as their volunteer coaching staff and their board representatives. A major goal of the program is to provide a safe environment where young athletes can compete, as well as focus on their character development.
The TRYA provides access to all eligible athletes, regardless of their personal financial means, allowing all athletes equal access to sports and to the many valuable lessons taught when participating on a sports team. Of course, all this opportunity comes with a cost. This requires public awareness and fundraising to help support the mission of the Youth Association.
In order to help fund this group, the TRYA Board is hosting a fabulous community event – for the second year!
It’s the Second Annual Travelers Restival and it’s happening THIS Saturday on August 21 from 3 to 8 pm at Trailblazer Park.
The group partners with the City of Travelers Rest, Travelers Rest High School and many community businesses and partners to champion this event, which serves as the lead fundraiser and sole source of revenue for the association. The proceeds, which are tax-deductible, generated by the Restival are entirely re-directed back into TRYA to support and enhance the experience of the children involved with TRYA to include lowering participation fees, to purchase uniforms, and to provide scholarships and sports equipment. In addition, these proceeds allow TRYA to be a strategic partner with the City and Travelers Rest Schools.
Two years ago the Restival was held and the crew is excited to host a second opportunity when last year’s event had to be cancelled. The original event was quite popular and lots of locals said it reminded them of the “corn festival” of days of old.
All the fun happens at Trailblazer Park and it’s definitely a family friendly event.
Of course, the stage at Trailblazer won’t be empty. Bringing his distinct sound and style, Benton Blount will headline the Restival. You might recognize him from his time on America’s Got Talent where he was a finalist. He calls himself as “country as cornbread”.
And what’s a festival without food? (Well, we all know we couldn’t gather at Trailblazer without food trucks and delicious options!) Cool off with Flamingo Jack’s Shaved Ice and fill up with The Corn Star and Carolina Classic Diner.
Spend the day strolling through the vendor booths and tents. You’re sure to find something for everyone – vendors like Bruiser Brand Apparel and A Bunch of Wood will be there. Owlrageous Boutique and Natural Kreation Designs, Windham Wicks and Jackson Batson will all be at the festival as well. The National Guard will be have a booth too. The list is long – but it also includes Blue Ridge Family Farm and Roger’s Carpentry, Thirty-One products, Matilda Jane clothing, Ruby Grae’s Boutique and Scentsy.
Shoot, even the Bloodmobile will be on site so you can shop AND save lives by donating blood! (Donors receive a $10 gift card and the Bloodmobile will also make a $10 charitable donation for every blood donor that day.)
Check out the Silent Auction items already available! You can check out the items online and at the festival. To bid, make your choices and your offers between 3 and 7 pm the day of the event. (The auction closes an hour earlier than the festival ends so that the volunteers can tally up the winners and pass out their victories!)
Y’all. There’s a football signed by Dabo, passes to the Children’s Museum, Chicory Alley gift cards, private lessons with Rockey at Tumble Tech, a $100 gift certificate to the Glade, a $1000 discount to Greene Lodge nd so much more! (And if you’re a local business and want to donate to this auction – there’s still time! You can find all the contact info at the end of this article.)
Some of this year’s Restival goals are to restore and refurbish the original scoreboard from the high school, to install more bleachers and to create some more field area for game play.
The group behind the event – the board members of the TRYA – said they bounced name ideas for the festival around for weeks. They kept up a group text thread with options and ideas. At the time, the football coordinator was Roger Williams and he was the man behind the name. His text of “Travelers Restival” popped through the feed and immediately everyone loved it and passed the motion via text!
We’re excited for this community event and can’t wait to celebrate TR on August 21!