Arriving at the Galt’s Mill site of the James River Batteau Festival a little before 7:00 AM, I saw the sun rising almost over the mountain in the distance. The campsite was busy with people getting ready for the day. Once again the Amelon United Methodist Church prepared pancakes and sausage for breakfast and I ate there visiting with Ralph Smith and some of his crew. The news of the morning was that our friend Clay Atkins had broken his wrist the evening before. Details were hard to get, however, it appears that somehow he fell near the campsite against a gunwale (top edge of a boat) and landed hard against his wrist. I also heard that another person got overheated and dehydrated from the sun yesterday.
Along the river the boats were looking good and spirits were high. Mrs. Turner sat onboard the batteau Buckingham with a cute baby girl and the baby got over onto a sweep all by herself and I got a good picture! Further down the shore Ned Nelson was having coffee and I asked him why wasn’t he scrubbing his beautiful wood on his decks like he did when the boat was new! The ladies were no where to be seen on their boat but they showed up eventually and got their stuff together and left camp before many of the crews. As usual they looked in good spirits and their teamwork was showing as Terry Zimmerman got a request for some spray lube for one of the pumps while she is on ground crew this year.
Doug Berry was doing some video taping while standing with Bill Trout. David and Barbara Haney were visiting while Emmett Abernathy was picking up site trash along the shore.
David, Barbara and I sat beside their nice med sized camper and talked about old times and some of the batteau people that have gone on to heaven. It was nice sitting there with my old crew-mates from way back in the day.
The Batteau Festival Camps in Bent Creek tonight. Tomorrow they travel to Wingina.