Swimming upstream and going upscale

Silver anniversary shad and a Styrofoam cake

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It’s not cheap to stage a shad festival.

For example, the beach and country bands hired by the Grifton Shad Festival in Grifton, North Carolina demand appearance fees. “We try to keep Saturday afternoon going open mike for a little while, but then we’ve got to pay,” festival president Charles Mitchell says. And putting on a decent parade entails contracting with Shriners International, which also doesn’t offer its services for free.

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