Aurora Fossil Festival celebrates 25 years this weekend

Published 6:11 pm Thursday, May 24, 2018

AURORA — Fossil lovers from Beaufort County and beyond will want to clear their calendars this Memorial Day weekend, as the town of Aurora rolls out the red carpet for the 25th annual Aurora Fossil Festival.

“We invite everyone to come out and spend the day with us, digging in the past,” festival co-chair and Aurora Fossil Museum Director Cynthia Crane said.

Festivities kick off this evening with a 6 p.m. opening ceremony at festival field, followed by the annual Little Miss and Mr. Fossil pageant. The 25th-anniversary Fossil Master Reunion will close out the evening’s events.

The festival continues bright and early on Saturday, with a Fossil Festival 5K beginning at 8 a.m. and a special breakfast for veterans at 9 a.m. at S.W. Snowden Elementary School. The festival’s hallmark parade begins at 11 a.m., with a classic car cruise-in immediately following at the Southern Bank Parking lot.

Musical talent for the event will include headliner Bryan Mayer, Saltwater Gold and Steel Shot.

2018 marks a special year, not just for the festival, but also for the Aurora Fossil Museum. The institution celebrates four decades as a mainstay in the economic and social fabric of Aurora, and the museum will hold a birthday celebration beginning at 12:25 p.m. Saturday. There will also be a fossil auction at 3 p.m., with funds generated benefiting the museum.

In addition, the festival will also feature many activities throughout the day, including a paleontology lecture series, activities for adults and children, free rides for the kids sponsored by Nutrien, helicopter rides, lawnmower pulls, local vendors and, of course, lots of digging for fossils.

Saturday’s festivities will conclude with a firework display that evening, and on Sunday morning there will be a community church service on Festival Field. For more information on the festival, visit