WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - Walnut Ridge held their 2nd Annual Beatles on the Ridge Festival Saturday. A familiar face walked the streets of Downtown Walnut Ridge, raising a lot of questions from residents. Ringer Star said he really enjoyed Saturday's festivities.
"I love the way they've painted up the town with all the colors and stuff. They've kept that dream and that vibe so to speak alive," Star said. Star told Region 8 News that the festival brought a lot of attention to the town and, brought back a lot of memories for many of the people he spoke to. He's called "Ringer Star" so he's not too confused with the Beatle, Ringo Star.
"There's been relatives that have come up to say their uncle was on the tarmac that night...someone else got on the plane and took a pillow," Star said.
It's been a long time since the Beatles landed in Walnut Ridge. Saturday however, they were back in full force. It was visible in more than just store fronts and on Abbey Road in Downtown Walnut Ridge, as the day had an "across the pond" feeling
"This is London weather in Walnut Ridge," Walnut Ridge Tourism Director, Charles Snapp said. He told Region 8 News that the day's steady drizzle didn't dampen the festivities. Snapp said over 100 vendors lined the streets of downtown and thousands converged on the town to enjoy the day's festivities. Snapp said this event really puts Walnut Ridge on the map.
"The number of Google hits we're getting off tourism related to the Beatles and the Rock and Roll highway, right now if you Google Beatles, we'll rank 7 or 8 on Google," Snapp said.
Saturday's major draw though was the Liverpool Legends from Branson, Missouri. The legends took the stage around 5 p.m. pleasing both younger and older generations.
14-year-old Cheyenne Shelton came to watch the Legends from Batesville. She told Region 8 News that The Beatles are her favorite band.
"I love their music. It's awesome music," Shelton said.
Charlie Tinker traveled in from Hardy. He said he really enjoys watching the Liverpool Legends.
"I've seen 'em three times and I'll come back every time they're here," Tinker said.
Region 8 News caught up with the Legends before they took the stage. They said they're glad to be back in Northeast Arkansas.
"It's just a great thing that they're doing for tourism and we're glad to be a part of it," Marty Scott said. Scott goes on stage as George Harrison. He said this event is pretty far reaching and drawing a much larger crowd this year.
"Fifteen thousand people, I heard," Scott said. "I read about it in Canada on the way here."