This weekend will be the 40th year the Waynesboro Summer Extravaganza has been held. To celebrate, the city is going bigger and expanding the event into two days.

The Summer Extravaganza will be held on Friday from 5 to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 3 to 10:30 p.m. at Ridgeview Park in Waynesboro.

“This year marks our 40th Extravaganza and we’ve added some changes to mix it up a bit,” Susan Roberts, superintendent at Waynesboro Parks and Recreation, said. “Instead of one very long day, the event will be split into two evenings.”

Friday evening will be kids’ night. Activities will include amusement rides, a petting zoo, face painting, balloon animals and family entertainers, such as ventriloquist Chris Campbell and magician Chris Michael. On Friday, rides are $20 a wristband for “all you can ride.” Michael goes on stage at 5:30 p.m. and Campbell at 6:45 p.m.

Saturday will focus on music and fireworks. The day kicks off with the 5K and 10K races. Activities will be provided throughout the day at the Woodland Shelter by the Blue Ridge Children’s Museum. Performances at the amphitheater will include the Mountain Heritage Cloggers, Jeremy Michael, Groove Train and Who Shot John.

Roberts said there were a few reasons they decided to split the event into two days.

“Knowing that it is just too long of a day for most folks to spend 12 hours at the park for an event, we decided to split it into two time slots, making each day a little different and inviting,” Roberts said. “Having the event for two days isn’t about having to pick one day over the other. There should be plenty of reasons to come both days. While Friday will be more geared toward children, the amusement rides will be running both days.”

On Saturday, ride tickets are 12 for $10. On both days, the free event will also have food for purchase and vendors.

As usual, fireworks end the event on Saturday.

“I would say almost anywhere at Ridgeview Park provides an amazing view,” Roberts said. “The fireworks are a favorite piece, as they never disappoint with so many beautiful displays of color.”

She noted that the fireworks are set off over the river and recommended residents do not sit under trees to obscure the view.

Roberts looked forward to the Extravaganza.

“My very favorite part is watching people get together and just having fun,” she said. “Over the years, the Extravaganza became one of those events where friends make plans to get together for the day and where folks from out of town frequently come home to reconnect with old friends or visit with family while attending the event.”

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