On Saturday, July 8, the City of Saluda will host its biggest celebration of the year, the annual Coon Dog Day. Beginning in 1963 as a fundraiser for the local Coon Club, a group dedicated to protecting raccoons and releasing them into the wild, the day-long festival has grown into a huge hometown celebration, one that locals look forward to throughout the year and that usually hosts more than 10,000 people.
Events will be packed throughout the day, which will start early at 8 a.m. and continue on until 11 p.m. The morning will begin with a 5K run, while the rest of the day will include a dog show, a big-wheel race, a treeing contest, live music, a parade, plenty of southern food and crafts for the entire family.
The evening will culminate with a street dance. There will also be a “meet and greet” with assorted breeds of coonhounds, the beloved dog and namesake of the day.
This year’s Coon Dog Day is expected to be as successful as ever and will continue a rich tradition for this tiny, yet exciting, town. In addition to bringing thousands of visitors, it provides a welcome opportunity for Saluda residents to show some hometown pride and catch up with friends and neighbors.
“It’s just a part of Saluda’s history and I couldn’t imagine the town without it,” says Tangie Morgan, coordinator of the festival. “It just gets bigger and better every year. There’s something for everybody.”
Coon Dog Day takes place on Main Street in downtown Saluda. For more information, visit cityofsaludanc.com.