35th Annual Keller Festival Kicks Off

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TUSCUMBIA, Ala. (WHNT) - Colbert counties largest festival is set to kick-off this evening, honoring America’s First Lady of Courage.

Organizers of the 35th annual Helen Keller Festival say the event continues to evolve, and draws people from across the world to Keller’s Birthplace of Tuscumbia.

As Executive Director of the museum, Sue Pilkilton has seen the festival grow from its infancy.

“It has certainly grown, and it brings a lot of pride to me and the birthplace of Helen Keller. To know Helen’s name is still out there and people want to come to our area to enjoy the events.”

Wednesday morning, car tags could be spotted in the birthplace parking lot from Ohio to Georgia.

Pilkilton said visitors from all over are drawn to Helen Keller’s story of overcoming disabilities and challenges, and that is bringing them to northwest Alabama this week.

“For the whole area it is great, for us, and for the state of Alabama of course,” stated Pilkilton. “When it comes to the lodging tax, restaurants, and our museum here, we see a lot of people from all over the United States.”

On Thursday morning, organizers say Spring Park in Tuscumbia will be transformed into the hub of the festival.

Music, education and the arts will all be centralized there for three days.

The First Presbyterian Church of Tuscumbia is kicking this week’s festival off Wednesday night with a praise music event that starts at 7pm on the church’s lawn; the event is free to the public.