Exeter moves ahead with plans for Fall Festival

Chamber says annual festival may be canceled but Miss Exeter candidates will continue on in virtual program regardless of restrictions

EXETER – While most major events in Visalia have been canceled through the end of the year, the Exeter Chamber of Commerce is cautiously moving forward with plans to hold its largest, and longest running annual event.

On Friday, the Exeter Chamber announced it is still planning a full week of events for its annual Fall Festival, celebrating its 107th year Oct. 5-10. The list of events includes traditional favorites such as the Pumpkin Carving Contest and Family Fun Night, Bank of the Sierra mixer and parade. The weeklong festivities will kick off with the Miss Exeter Coronation Dinner scheduled for Monday, Oct. 5. Miss Exeter is a personal development and scholarship program held in conjunction with thee Fall Festival each year. The winner will also represent the community at events in Exeter and throughout the area during their one-year reign.

Regardless of restrictions, the chamber said it will move hold the Miss Exeter program in one form or another.

“If the COVID-19 mandates are still in effect, the festival may not happen this year; however, the Miss Exeter program will take place, it will just have a different look,” executive director Sandy Blankenship said. “We have adapted the program to a virtual format. The workshops and weekly meetings will take place via Zoom.”

Candidates must be an Exeter High School student or live in the EUHS district, be a senior, and a full-time student. The chamber will accept up to 16 (sixteen) candidates. Last date for entries is Friday, Aug. 21, 2020 at 3 p.m. Candidates are not eligible to participate more than one year. The Exeter Chamber of Commerce and the Fall Festival Committee reserve the right to refuse any application.

All candidates must meet the criteria and return the required paperwork to the chamber on or before Friday, Aug. 21, 2020 at 3 p.m. to be considered. Candidates must submit a completed entry form, report card as proof of GPA, a personal essay, a parent agreement and release form prior to the deadline. All of the forms can be found at www.exeterchamber.com. Failure to complete all required assignments as scheduled will result in elimination from the Miss Exeter program. Please refer to candidate assignments page for personal essay details and due dates.

Whomever is crowned Miss Exeter will receive a $1,000 scholarship from the chamber. Miss Exeter and her court will each receive gift packets with items donated by local merchants and businesses, as well as a lifetime of memories. Enclosed are an entry form and a schedule of events. Miss Exeter and Court must attend these events during their reigning year. It is important that candidates attend as a group.

Each candidate will be judged on the following items: A personal essay (500-750 words), a 5- to 10-minute verbal presentation via Zoom, a 10-minute special presentation, using photos and slide shows, the sale of virtual raffle tickets for the chamber and participation and cooperation during the candidate process.

“We look forward to getting to know each candidate and developing a good relationship with you,” Blankenship said. “You are encouraged to have a rewarding year as a participant in this community event promoting quality of life in Exeter.”

Call the chamber office at 592-2919 if there are any questions.

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