Union County

Family night out grew to be town festival

Kids can get their faces painted and enjoy other activities and rides at Stallings Fest in Stallings Park on Sept.19.
Kids can get their faces painted and enjoy other activities and rides at Stallings Fest in Stallings Park on Sept.19. COURTESY OF THE TOWN OF STALLINGS

What started 15 years ago as a family night out has become Stallings’ most revered community festival.

Dena Sabinske, Stallings parks and recreation director, said the town has made it a priority to give back to its citizens.

“Since the beginning, it’s been a way for the town to give back to the community,” she said, “a fun outing for citizens to enjoy a great day in the park.”

Stalling Fest will take place at Stallings Park on Sept. 19, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Sabinske said she expects the event will host a crowd of over 5,000 town residents and visitors throughout the day. There will be 28 vendors, amusement rides, entertainment, food and activities for kids.

Sabinske said the layout of the event was designed with families’ in mind. Being a mother of three, she drew from experience and weaved the rides alongside vendor booths, so families don’t get stuck in one area.

“Parents can negotiate,” she said. “You give me 20 minutes at the booths and then, we will wait in line for a ride and go back and forth.”

The best part is the event is free.

“We wanted to make the cost as low as possible so all families can come out and not have that burden,” Sabinske said.

Adults and children can ride on all 11 amusement rides for free, and there’s something for every age: bounce houses and a mechanical train ride for toddlers, a carousel for small children, bounce house obstacle course for school-aged kids, and super slides and a Ferris wheel for everyone.

Kids also can participate in face painting and games, as well as enjoy a roaming magician and juggling stilt walker. The vendor booths are Stallings-based businesses that will have free or low-cost activities too.

Performances take center stage throughout the day. There will be a DJ music party, karate and martial arts demos, a magic show, dance routine and music group performance.

RadioJacks will headline the event.

This is the first year Stallings will provide a band. Sabinske said RadioJacks came highly recommended from Waxhaw town staff. This regional five-member cover band only performs current hits such as Bruno Mars, Katy Perry, Maroon 5 and Taylor Swift.

Mayor Wyatt Dunn said he’s excited about all that’s planned for Stallings Fest this year.

“Stallings Fest is a great way to kick off the fall season and a way to give back to the citizens of Stallings, while showcasing our award winning park.

“Stallings Fest provides a fun way for me as mayor to interact will Stallings’ citizens. I take to heart all the comments by our citizens and love to hear their thoughts about our great town.”

Crystal O’Gorman is a freelance writer: crystalogormanwrites@gmail.com.

Stallings Fest

The event is sponsored by Metrolina Eye Associates, Killingsworth Environmental, Diviniti Hair Salon, Hwy 55 Burgers, Shakes and Fries, Vital Yoga, King’s Greenhouse Garden Center, K104.7 Beasley Radio Group and Carolina Kids Dentistry.


▪ 10 a.m. – DJ Music Party.

▪ 11 a.m. – Opening remarks from Mayor Dunn and special guest.

▪ Noon – Chief Short Safety Magic Show.

▪ 12:30 p.m. – Toma Dojo Karate Performance.

▪ 1 p.m. – Energy Dance Complex Performance.

▪ 1:30 p.m. – LANTi Music Group Performance.

▪ 2 p.m. – Magician Criswell Magic Show.

▪ 2:30 p.m. – Spark Martial Arts Performance.

▪ 3 p.m. – DJ Music Party.

▪ 4 – 6 p.m. RadioJack.