By Zach Armstrong

PRINCE GEORGE, Va -- The Richard Bland College of William & Mary has decided to cancel their annual Pecan Festival due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and in accordance with the commonwealth’s phased approach.

            The annual festival was meant for friends and family to take part in a day of entertainment, fine food and drink and to celebrate the pecan. The previous Pecan Festival that took place in 2019 occurred at the Grove on Saturday, Oct. 12 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

            RBC is home to the oldest and largest pecan groves in Virginia. There are nearly 1,000 pecan trees on the grounds of the community college and the pecans are harvested annually and the proceeds are used to advance student success and maintain the groves.

            The 2019 festival also included the premier of the latest special brew, Orange Peel Pale Ale and other specialty beers and wines from Steam Bell Beer Works. Local bands Groove Potion and Sweet Justice performed on the festival’s main stage.

            "For the safety of our patrons, merchants, volunteers, artists, staff and students, due to the unpredictable and ongoing threat posed by the spread of COVID-19, and in accordance with our government officials’ phased approach to group gatherings, Richard Bland College has made the difficult decision to cancel the Pecan Festival scheduled for Oct. 24 at the College," RBC said in a press release.

            This year’s Pecan Festival would have been the event’s fifth year. Previous festival’s featured pecan-themed food, entertainment and drink. Over 150 merchants sold products ranging from soaps and jewelry to baked goods and clothing along with other non-pecan-based foods.

            RBC has not, however, canceled their scheduled annual “RBC Foundation Golf Tournament” set to take place Sept. 29 at the Highlands Golf Club. The tournament is in support of scholarships, athletics, and the annual fund.