Roanoke City prepares for GOfest 2016

By Erin Brookshier - Virginia Today Reporter

ROANOKE (WSLS 10)-- Work continues at River's Edge Sports Complex as the Star City prepares for this weekend's GOfest. It's an event that brings thousands of people to the area to watch demonstrations, check out some of the newest camping and biking products and just to spend some time outside.

When the festival started back in 2010, only about 4,500 people attended. It's quickly grown over the past six years and this weekend more than 30,000 people are expected to attend the festival.

Organizers say there are three major categories they incorporate into the festival. First, there's 'Watch it' aspect, with dozens of shows like the Dock Dogs long jump contest, the Lumberjack Show and the BMX Stunt Show. Then, there's 'Try it,' with 150 different free activities that people can try for themselves, like paddle boarding and fly fishing. Finally, there's 'Race it,' which includes one of this year's biggest activities-- the wild gear chase. The shase will send people out on an urban scavenger hunt to find different checkpoints and win prizes.

It's a festival where people won't just be walking around looking at booths, but actually getting involved.

"Everyday there's going to be new things for you to try and experience," says Patrick Bass, Roanoke City's Outdoor Education Coordinator. "Ultimately, it's a festival for everyone. From little kids all the way up to grandparents and even dogs. Bring them out. There's something for everyone to try and that's our goal."

The festival kicks off on Friday at 6 p.m. and runs until Sunday at 5 p.m. Click here for more information. 

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