Guest Editorial: Wrinkle doesn’t put a hitch in RAC

The 22nd Annual Rock Around the Clock (RAC) Festival is in the books. And it was a good one.

Even with the hot, humid weather it was a stellar turnout both Friday and Saturday.  We would like to thank all of our sponsors who make the Festival possible.  We have faithful sponsors who have been with us for 22 years and we have new sponsors each year lending their support to this community event.  These sponsorships relieve the Town and County from any funding of the Festival.

A little off track here, but I think I should mention that the Chamber doesn’t receive citizen-paid tax dollars. We are partially funded by a percentage of Accommodation Tax dollars that are collected by the state. Those funds pass from the state through the County to the Chamber.

In planning an event on public, municipal and state property there are certain guidelines that must be followed.  A release is signed by every vendor and car show participant. Food Vendors must provide a copy of liability insurance.  A street Closing Permit request is sent to Public Safety, the Chief signs off and passes it on to SCDOT for approval. The Chamber purchases liability insurance to cover every area in the foot print of the festival, including streets, and public/private parking lots.

While RAC came off smoothly again this year for the most part, there was a wrinkle.  An independent group planned their event to be held the same day as RAC. This was to promote another event they are planning for November. The Chamber was not part of this planning. We were told on Sept. 28, at a Winnsboro Merchant Meeting, that 20 expensive cars would be on N. Congress St. I have since learned that the planner approached the director of the RAC Car Show and was invited to participate. The planner, however, said he did not want to be part of the RAC Car Show. When I offered him the forms (including waivers) needed, he said he did not need them, that he was experienced in these shows and knew exactly what needed to be done. Therefore we were not given any waivers for the 20 cars.

There was no more communication.  The Chamber, Town nor County can assume the liability for such expensive cars.

Terri Vickers, Interim Director

Fairfield County Chamber of Commerce

Contact us: (803) 767-5711 | P.O. Box 675, Blythewood, SC 29016 | [email protected]