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Third Annual Flip Flop Festival to be held in Harpers Ferry and Bolivar, April 22-23

Come celebrate with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) and the Trail and Town Alliance of Harpers Ferry and Bolivar during the third annual Flip Flop Festival on April 22-23. The event will feature a variety of activities, vendors, music and workshops for visitors to enjoy. The festival celebrates the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) and the surrounding Harpers FerryBolivar area, and also recognizes the new movement of “flip flop thru-hikes,” where hikers begin their attempts to walk all 2,190 miles of the Trail by beginning at its ceremonial midpoint. Admission to the festival is free and everyone is invited to join the fun!

“The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is very happy with the wide variety of visitors the Flip Flop Festival saw last year,” said Jeff Metzger, visitor services supervisor for the ATC. “This festival does a great job of bringing the Appalachian Trail community together with the Harpers Ferry and Bolivar communities to explore different ways to hike the Trail and enjoy this historic area. This year there will be opportunities for the public to learn about rafting, biking and rock climbing, which is new and definitely something to look forward to.”

Attendees will have the opportunity to interact with hikers during workshops that cover many topics, including hiking for beginners, Trail magic and etiquette, and Leave No Trace principles. There will also be backpack shake-downs throughout the festival, where experts help educate hikers on necessary gear and the best ways to manage pack weight. Outdoor enthusiasts can attend additional workshops about other recreational opportunities and the rich history in and around Harpers Ferry National Historical Park that include the Underground Railroad and Storer College, which was created for freed slaves after the Civil War.

Flip Flop Festival weekend overview:
Date/Time: April 22, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. and April 23, 7 a.m.-5 p.m.
Location: 760 Fillmore St., Harpers Ferry, WV 25425

Schedule:
Saturday:
Live Music: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Food and Local Store Vendors: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Outdoor Recreation and History Workshops: 10:20 a.m.-4:50 p.m.
Pack Shakedowns: 9 a.m.-noon, 1-4 p.m.
Keynote Speaker: Derick “Mr. Fabulous” Lugo 7 p.m.

Sunday:
Pancake Breakfast: 7-9 a.m.
Flip Flopper Send-off: 9 a.m.
Outdoor Recreation and History Workshops: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Pack Shakedowns: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
African-American History Hike: 1- 3 p.m.

For more information about the Flip Flop Festival, including a full schedule of events, visit http://www.appalachiantrail.org/flipflop.