Every year 60-70,000 people go to the small town of Benson, North Carolina. Why would this many people go to a town of only 3,569? For nothing other than Benson Mule Days! The event takes place at the end of September every year and includes rodeos, a mule pulling contest, arts and crafts, vendors, music, a parade that attracts 20,000 on its own, and more! Festival goers can be seen around Benson on their horses, and people from as far as Wilmington travel on horse back to celebrate the event.
It may seem like such a festival wouldn’t draw the crowds that it does, but Benson’s Mule Days has become one of the largest festivals in North Carolina. Travelers from Alaska, Germany, and California make their way to Johnston County in order to experience the small town, southern feel of this festival. Benson is the perfect place to hold a festival like this because it is so small and has a historical downtown area. When visitors walk through the aisles of arts and crafts and street vendors while hearing bluegrass music play in the background, they feel just as they should while in a small North Carolinian town. There is plenty for people of all ages to enjoy while experiencing southern hospitality.
North Carolina’s image is perfectly illustrated by Benson’s Mule Days. Those not from the south trying to get the experience of all that it has to offer need to look no further than Mule Days.
-Brie Golden, Micaela Fouhy, Will Cosden, Lindsey Baggett, Andrew Mayer