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Photo: Nitro festival takes on a centennial flair

KENNY KEMP | Gazette-Mail
It was 1917 all over again in Nitro on Friday, as President Woodrow Wilson (portrayed by Jim Gearhart) and first lady Edith Bolling Wilson (portrayed by Betsy Ely) arrived in Nitro on a train, then boarded a Model T Ford that took them the city’s Living Memorial Park to open the annual Boomtown Days festival. The re-enactors from Wytheville, Virginia (Edith Wilson’s hometown), kicked off the event, part of Nitro’s continuing celebration of its centennial. The Boomtown Days festival continues throughout the weekend, including a parade at 10 a.m. Saturday and the Wilson re-enactors’ presentation in the Living Memorial Park at noon Saturday.

Nitro’s Boomtown Days festival opened Friday with re-enactors portraying Woodrow and Edith Bolling Wilson, the president and first lady 100 years ago. The annual event has a centennial flavor as Nitro marks its first 100 years.

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