Thousands swarm at Fire Ant Festival - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Thousands swarm at Fire Ant Festival

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By Tayleigh Davis - bio | email

ASHBURN, GA (WALB) - Thousands of people came out to enjoy Ashburn's 15th Annual Fire Ant Festival. Organizers say the good weather may be one reason the crowd was so big this year.

"Last year we got rained out so I think this year people wanted to come out more than ever so I think we've had a great crowd and a great day," said Ashburn Chamber of Commerce President, Shelley Zorn.

Businesses, restaurants, and hotels saw a benefit from the swarms of people. All 54 rooms at the Best Western were booked.

"Every fourth weekend in March we're ready for it and it's usually real busy and we have to do a lot of planning for it," said Best Western Desk Clerk, Kate Garner.

Families brought out their children who enjoyed the giant ant, rides and sweets. It's rides like the mechanical bull  that attract some people to Ashburn every year. More than 20,000 people are expected to walk through the streets this weekend. That's about five times the population of Ashburn which sits at 4,000.

It also sits well for Rarfran Poyraz who makes a living selling original gyros and sish kabobs at festivals around the nation.

"It's a very fantastic festival and I've heard good things about it," Rarfran said. "We enjoy our time here."

And so do the thousands of people who cruised the streets in downtown Ashburn. Organizers will plan for next years event starting Monday. The Theme will be "Viva La Fire Ant Festival" with Elvis and Las Vegas. This year's theme was NASCAR.

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