Sounds of the blues howled through the Courthouse Plaza as the Bluegrass BBQ Fest returned to downtown Lexington for a second year.
Crowds of people and the smell of slow-cooked barbecue packed into the plaza as local bands— from Short & Company to Joslyn & The Sweet Compression— performed on stage.
Standing for hours in the humidity and heat didn’t deter vendors like Samantha Jean Moore, a designer who makes pillows from recycled and vintage fabric.
“It’s been awesome. Super hot, but I don’t care,” Moore said.
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Moore, who’s lived in Lexington for 12 years, said the festival reflected the city’s culture.
"There's a lot of diversity here, and the festival really reflects that," Moore said.
Food vendors explored diversity, too, offering Cuban and Thai barbecue along with the usual southern brisket and pork.
For Elmer Eolis, the festival was worth attending — not just for the barbecue, but for the sake of bringing more attractions to downtown Lexington.
“It’s good for the community, it’s good for the city,” said Eolis, who lives in Lexington. “When you bring everybody together in downtown, you know, it’s nice.”
The festival continues through 11 p.m. Saturday.