SUFFOLK, Va. - After COVID-19 derailed it last year, the Suffolk Peanut Festival returns this year — and it's sure to be rad!
We want to give the community something," said Theresa Earls, executive committee chairman of Peanut Fest 2021. "It's something to look forward to. We've all been trapped inside our houses for the past two years. And what better way to really experience Suffolk and the true flavors of Suffolk than Peanut Fest!"
Peanut Festival volunteers share the chairwoman's excitement.
"Last year because of COVID we weren't allowed, we had to cancel, and we were all pretty upset," said Gavin Wiggins, Peanut Festival volunteer and Goober Gang member. "But now we're all back here and ready to have a good time."
The 43rd Suffolk Peanut Fest is slated for Friday, October 8 through Sunday, October 10 at the Suffolk Executive Airport, located at 1410 Airport Road.
The theme for this year is “Music, Mullets & Motorsports - A Totally 80’s Vibe!” Attendees can expect an array of 1980s-themed family fun, live music, costumes, décor and more.
"If want to wear something special, maybe neon, bright colors," explained Earls. "If you've ever wanted to do that big wave in your bangs, now's your chance. No one will judge you."
The move to a three-day schedule has various events and activities shifting to new days and times as festival planners incorporate traditional fest favorites while introducing new exciting elements. The Suffolk Peanut Fest Main Stage will feature highly acclaimed, nationally touring tribute bands showcasing popular 1980s genres.
A second stage in the new “Open Air Peanut Lounge” will offer a variety of entertainment, ranging from local school music programs, champion clogging teams to regional musicians and bands.
The event also includes a variety of community vendors and nonprofit organizations.
"We're doing a blood drive with the red cross and we're collecting food for Food Lion Feeds," said Earls. "We work with different nonprofit organizations throughout the event. So it's not just about having a good time, it's also about supporting the community."
New for 2021: A Roller Rink for showing off your best 1980s skating moves, a Touch-A-Truck, enhanced straw maze and family area and more!
Suffolk Ruritan Club’s Shrimp Feast will move to Friday, October 8 from 3-7 p.m., and the Suffolk Demolition Derby will move to Saturday, October 9 at 11:30 a.m. with a Kids Power Wheel Derby 30 minutes before the main derby.
Traditional activities such as the carnival and amusements, fireworks, the Peanut Butter Sculpting Contest, the Swamp Roar Motorcycle Rally, arts and crafts, a petting zoo and more are also planned.
The Suffolk Peanut Fest Main Stage lineup can be found below:
Friday, October 8
- 3 p.m. - Island Boy (Shrimp Feast entertainment)
- 9 p.m. - Chase & Ovation: Celebrating the Music of Prince
Saturday, October 9
- 2:30 p.m. - Gone Country (Knoxville Tennessee’s Premier 80s Country Cover Band)
- 4:30 p.m. - Earth, Wind & Fire Tribute Band
- 7 p.m. - Mullett – The Premier Rockers for Hair Band Fanatics
- 9 p.m. - Yellow Brick Road: A Tribute to Elton John
Sunday, October 10
- 2:30 p.m. - The Deloreans
- 5:00 p.m. - Frontiers: The Ultimate Journey Tribute Band
Suffolk Peanut Fest general admission is $10 per person; ages 10 and under are free. Sunday, October 10 is Military Appreciation Day, and active and retired military families will receive half off their admission with proper ID.
To learn more, go to SuffolkPeanutFest.com or call 757.539.6751.