Kicking off October right

Foster Senn - Contributing Columnist

Newberry’s Oktoberfest has grown into one of the best fall festivals in South Carolina. Saturday promises to be a fun-filled day, and merchants and vendors are set to welcome Newberry citizens and visitors from around the state and beyond. The city works to make it better every year, including a shuttle bus that runs from Tractor Supply and other points.

In addition to seeing the great vendors in the streets, I encourage you to step inside the stores to support our local businesses. They have new merchandise, are excited about Oktoberfest and are the lifeblood of downtown.

We’re excited several new businesses opened downtown. Steelhorse Smokehouse opened last week at 1106 Main Street to rave reviews. Owners Frank and Shevonne Kelly are outstanding cooks and believe in quality service. My recommendation for a side item—the collards. Really smooth.

The Cotton Shed opened at 1112 Main Street with Southern apparel, Western bootwear and accessories. Owners Daniel and Miranda Rosensteel and Kemper Dennis invite you to visit.

Newberry Yoga is off to an excellent start, and owners Jane Wyatt and Susan Dorton have a beautiful studio at 1121 Caldwell Street, just off Main Street. A middle-age male who takes class there most weekdays told me Newberry Yoga has greatly helped his flexibility, strength and balance.

Handcrafted Artisan Emporium will open Saturday at 1110 Harrington Street, which is the building with the Coca Cola mural and is across from the Newberry College Wrestling facility (old Market Basket). Owner Kayla Sansam will have her own handmade soap and an impressive selection of handmade items from local craftsmen in pottery, textiles, candles, pocketbooks and food items.

At the former Cathy’s Cakery location at 1211 Main Street, Kristi Kuehl and Gary Palmer will open Pieces of Time home décor store. After selling their similar store in California and moving here, Kristi and Gary will offer “painted vintage furniture, upcycling and re-purposing.” For people that like HGTV, this is your place. Kristi also has her own paint line that’s carried by 30 retail outlets.

Later this month, The Aviator Karaoke Bar will open at 1505 Main Street, which is beside The Ritz. Bruce Clamp, who will co-own this and the Corner Scoop with his son, Kevin, flew helicopters in Vietnam and Desert Storm, piloted commercial jets, and now works for the Federal Aviation Administration. He enjoyed karaoke when stationed in South Korea. The Aviator will now offer karaoke and trivia nights, plus aviation memorabilia as the décor.

In city news the Newberry municipal elections were held Sept. 11, and I was honored to be re-elected for four years. I thank the citizens for this opportunity. Councilmen Thomas Boyd, Lemont Glasgow and Zebbie Goudelock were also re-elected.

The city continues to improve its utility infrastructure, including beginning construction of a new electric substation in Mollohon. I also want to thank the city staff as I’ve heard much praise of them in recent weeks, whether it’s the police deftly catching an ATM robbery suspect, the utility crews getting power back on quickly after a storm, or numerous city employees doing their job very well everyday.

In addition to Oktoberfest, there’s much activity coming up. Newberry College hosts Lenoir-Rhyne in football Saturday at 4 p.m. and will hold Homecoming Oct. 27 with many activities planned. The Newberry County Chamber of Commerce’s popular Farmers Market is back for the fall as the Chamber will host a Fall Farmer’s Market at Memorial Park each Saturday morning Oct. 13-Nov. 17. Other agritourism opportunities include pumpkins at Lever Farms, the corn maze at Do-Si-Jo’s, and the fall festival at Enoree Vineyards Oct. 13.

The Newberry Opera House fall season continues with an exciting schedule. I recently gave an Opera House brochure to someone from Asheville that knows a lot about music. He was very surprised by the selection the Opera House has and said more than once as he flipped the brochure, “Y’all got them? Wow.”

I hope you have a nice October.

Foster Senn

Contributing Columnist

Foster Senn is the mayor of Newberry. His columns appear periodically in The Newberry Observer.

Foster Senn is the mayor of Newberry. His columns appear periodically in The Newberry Observer.