Updated on Wednesday*:
Public Is Drawn
To Fun Festival,
North Wins First Day;
South Battles Back
To Cheers Of Crowd
Belle Boyd Mesmerizes
Heritage Village Group
The second annual Fun Festival was hosted by Calhoun
County Park last weekend. The festival featured food, activities, and
the first reenactment of “The Battle of Sycamore.”
On Friday, re-enactment camps began to line the
hillsides. In the afternoon, fourth graders from Arnoldsburg and
Pleasant Hill schools walked into the past through demonstrations hosted
by the re-enactors.
It included presentations from blacksmith Grant Clark,
medic Jim Miracle, artillery battery Chad Spohn and Rick Seebaugh,
cavalrymen Marvin Miracle and Laura Seebaugh, and chaplain Tim Black.
Tours of the encampment were also given. Pleasant Hill
principal Bob Bonar said that the field trip was wonderful and the
students enjoyed themselves very much.
Camps were open to the public on Friday evening for the
viewing of a special twilight artillery firing by Kanawha Artillery,
C.S.A., and Capt. John Carlin’s Battery D, 1st W.Va. Light Artillery.
The night sky was filled with fire as the sound of the cannons echoed
through the valleys and hilltops.
Night Fire-photo by Cathrine Curry
Saturday began with a long-drive golf contest and a flag
ceremony at Heritage Village. By afternoon, families began to arrive for
corn hole tournaments, children’s games, raffles, and goat petting
sponsored by Nickel Dime Farm and members of the Appalachian Goat
At Heritage Village, History Alive! program character
Maria Isabella “Belle” Boyd, confederate spy,
performed for a large audience. She was portrayed by Patty Cooper
of Parkersburg. Her performance was one of the many highlights of the
Wagon rides provided transportation around the park and
to the battle scene.
At 2 p.m., the first annual Battle of Sycamore began.
The battle was hosted by Calhoun County’s own 19th Regiment of Virginia
Cavalry, Company A, “The Moccasin Rangers.”
On Saturday, the goal of the re-enactment was to be
As the battle raged, Rangers slowly made their way
through the high grass from the cover of the woods. Shots were fired,
but the Federal forces stayed strong.
Having run low on ammunition, the C.S.A. withdrew into
the high grass. A C.S.A. prisoner, as well as a Union deserter, were put
down in a ruthless end by Federal forces.
The battle was given “polite” applause and cheers from
the large crowd.
Sunday’s battle was planned to be more theatrical. It
began with cannon fire from both sides.
Union forces were firing from the cover of the McDonald
house and were making strides toward the C.S.A. line. After the fall of
the Confederate cannon, it looked as if the Rangers were close to
defeat, but a rally began to ensue.
The seemingly Southern-sympathizing crowd roared as
Confederate forces made their way to the McDonald house and successfully
pushed the Union back. After a scuffle in front of the house, the
Rangers took up position at the Union’s fallen front.
Sunday’s battle ended with many soldiers down, but this
day was a victory for the Johnny Rebs. The “Bars and Stars” waved in
Re-enactors included Brian Arthur, Brock Arthur, Jim
Allman, Jed Bates, Marie Bates, Ben Bell, Ben Bell, Jr., Aaron Black,
Colton Black, Tim Black, Greg Buskirk, Keith Butcher, Dennis Carder, Ken
Conwell, Fred Cornell, Aaron Cottrell, Eric Criss, Tyler Criss, Sarah
Dornon, Elijah Duffield,
John Haddox, Allen Harmon, Donnie Jones, James C. Kerns,
Alex Leonard, Randall Lynch, Nub Marks, Samuel McKenney, Steve McKenney,
Jim Miracle, Marvin Miracle, Michael Myers, David H. Owens,
Junior Parker, Steven Rogers, Andrew Rowand, Michael
Sabatino, John Schneider, Jason Studemwalt, Kevin Thomas, Barbara Voiers,
Eric Voiers, Fred Waybright, Terry Whited, and Dave Williams.
Also on Sunday were two period church services in an
The weekend came to an end with final firing of muskets.
A young boy, who toured Heritage Village both days, said
he enjoyed the weekend. His words made this teacher and history lover
smile. “I love history,” said the young man. “Next year, I will wear a
blue coat for the Union. I won’t just watch, I will be a part.”
That is what it is all about. Teach the young to be
proud of their heritage. They will jump at the chance to preserve where
we have been and make way the path to where we need to go.
“Next year,” said Captain Dennis Carder, “we will have
the second annual Battle of Sycamore, and it will be bigger and better.”
We look forward to a new Calhoun County tradition.
Festival event winners:
Rifle drawing, Shawn Parsons, Grantsville; 50/50
drawing, Steve Long, Cincinnati, Ohio, who donated his winnings back to
Calhoun County Park.
3D archery, 1st, Kevin Cunningham, Mt. Zion; 2nd, Mark
Geiger, Pine Creek; 3rd, Brian Reynolds, Little Hawk.
Corn hole tournament, 1st, Gerald Sampson and Randall
Dawson; 2nd, Jeff Goodrich and Justin Price.
Golf long drive, adult male, 1st, Richard Welch; 2nd,
Mark Geiger; 3rd, Keith Smith; adult female, 1st, Rebekah Taylor, 2nd,
Ronna (?); student, 1st, Zachary (?).
For More Pictures of the Fun Festival
This Week's Editorial:By Helen Morris:
Calhoun County Map