2016 Bartlett Festival: Event draws crowds for balmy weekend

An estimated 5,000 people browsed booths, got thrills and chills on carnival rides, perused shiny classic cars, sighed over the smells of delicious barbecue, tapped their toes to the live music and otherwise enjoyed the 2016 Bartlett Festival, BBQ Cooking Contest and Car Show this past weekend.

A light breeze dispelled the heat for festival-goers, and attendees praised the free air-conditioned bus service that shuttled festival-goers from distant parking lots to the events at W.J. Freeman Park on Friday and Saturday.

Winners had not yet been announced for the car show or barbecue contest as of press time this week, and the city organizers concentrated on judging and enjoying the “Beards for Bartlett” competition rather than gathering the names of the winners. So although details are scant at this stage about the outcome of competitions, Bartlett’s leaders deem the event a success. (Editor’s note: We will have full details on the barbecue competition in next week’s paper, complete with photos.)

The event held a special nostalgia for Bartlett residents and former residents this year, as it also was a celebration of the city’s sesquicentennial. Reminders of the city’s 150th birthday were sprinkled throughout the park, including a banner at the entrance and designs on the city’s 2016 Christmas ornament and this year’s festival T-shirt.

See more details on upcoming events and videos about the Bartlett sesquicentennial at the city’s website.

Written by Carolyn Bahm, Express editor. Contact her at (901) 433-9138 or via email to bartlett.editor@journalinc.com.