The festival is sponsored by the Portal Heritage Society and is held the first weekend in October each year to spotlight the importance that the turpentine industry has played in the area’s economy.
A parade through downtown Portal will kick off the activities Saturday. Local vendors and others from as far away as Jacksonville, Fla., and Bluffton, S. C., will be there. There will be plenty of crafts, all sorts of food and entertainment, including a street dance Saturday night featuring the J. Alan Brown Band.
The festival will start up again at noon Sunday and continue until 5 p.m.
The festival focuses on the historic E. C. Carter turpentine still, one of only 3 such stills at operation in their original sites in Georgia. The still was in operation from the 1930s until it closed in the 1960’s. In 1982 Denver Hollingsworth and the Portal Heritage Society began the restoration process.
Turpentine produced at the still will be available for purchase. One of the highlights of the festival will be a tour of Turpentine Museum.
Proceeds from the festival will go toward supporting projects of the Portal Heritage Society.