x
Breaking News
More () »

Columbia's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Columbia, South Carolina | WLTX.com

Mayesville festival cancelled another year as virus remains a concern

Traffic from the annual Mary McLeod Bethune Legacy Festival is a nonfactor for another year as the coronavirus remains a concern.

SUMTER COUNTY, S.C. — One of the lingering effects of the pandemic has been event cancellations and, when it happens in a small, rural town, it can mean more than just a fun day missed.

Mayesville’s mayor described it as “like a drought,” as the downtown streets remain mostly empty.

Traffic from the annual Mary McLeod Bethune Legacy Festival is a nonfactor for another year as the coronavirus remains a concern.

“It really has hurt the community,” Miller said. “Not only for the business, and the business is the most important thing, but people in general, family in general. You miss that connection, talking with them.”

RELATED: Over 400 bags of litter collected during clean-up event in Sumter

The festival, typically held in May, attracts hundreds in honor of Dr. Bethune, who is a civil rights trailblazer, education leader and native of the area.

Credit: Kayland Hagwood
A painting of Mary McLeod Bethune at her Mayesville museum.

Food and activities mean an opportunity to connect, filling the quiet streets with conversation and showcasing what’s new in town.

“We have added the historic museum for the town of Mayesville which will encompass the story of the town of Mayesville back during its heyday,” Miller said.

RELATED: Remembering Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, an educator and civil rights trailblazer

Apartments, a health center and deli are also under construction.

“We’re going to gear up for 2022,” Miller said, “and we’re looking forward to everyone to come back and we’ll put the COVID behind us and we’re going to move forward.”