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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

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Independence Day Festival features plenty of music

Friday, June 27, 2014

By CHARLES BOOTHE - Staff Writer

Music will fill the air in Rocky Mount Thursday night, July 3, for the annual Independence Day Festival.

Gates open at 5 p.m. for the free event, sponsored by the Rocky Mount Rotary Club, which includes food, fun for children, fireworks and great music.

The festival is held at the Franklin County High School football field.

Barefoot West headlines the show at 8 p.m. The band is a quintet of musicians who all come from different musical backgrounds and influences to form their own catchy, unique, tight and smooth sound.

A combination of good songwriting, tasteful grooves, tight playing, strong soulful vocals, and Southern charm are just a few things that make Barefoot West a favorite among music fans in Southwest Virginia.

Barefoot West began performing in 2006, and band members include Kyle Forry, Jeff Maiden, Sonny Campbell, Wes Chappell, Justin Arnett and Bob Casey.

Barefoot West has been voted "Best Local Band - Platinum" in the Smith Mountain Laker Magazine's "Best of SML Awards" for the last four years. They were also filmed in the movie "Lake Effects," which included six of their original songs.

The band got its name from a street just west of Rocky Mount. Forry grew up here, and he and Arnett misread the road sign some 15 years ago, so the band's name is Barefoot West instead of Barfoot West.

At 6:30 p.m., The Other White Meat will perform.

Jonathan Barker and Steve Guidus, a piano/guitar duo from Roanoke, will be playing rock n' roll music from the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.

The group can often be heard at Norah's Cafe and 419 in Roanoke.

Opening the show will be Ashley Hammock, last year's winner of the Franklin County's Got Talent contest. Following her will be The Blues Brothers, the dance team of Katelyn Holcomb and Angeline Quinn, who won this year's talent contest.

Rotary club members will be busy selling raffle tickets for $100 and $1. Prizes for the $100 tickets are first place, $5,000; second place, $3,000; and third place, $2,000. Area businesses donated prizes to be given away for the $1 raffle tickets.

Proceeds from this year's raffle ticket sales go toward the 5-K Family Fitness Trail at Waid Park.

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