Welcome to Conway’s Festival of the Hills!
Starting in 1962, Conway has annually welcomed visitors to experience our warmth and ‘joie de vivre’ over the weekend before Columbus Day. Modeled after the 1915 celebration of 100 years of peace between the United States and Great Britain, the first Festival included dinners, round and square dancing, and displays by local artists, expanding over the next two years to highlight the varied artistic talent Conway hosts with the addition of the Hill Towns Talent Show. The ensuing years of growth cemented the Festival of the Hills as a much-loved Conway tradition.
The ‘modern’ Festival is held the Sunday before Columbus Day. Sunday’s main events include contests of strength and skill in log-splitting and skillet-toss (our signature event), a 10 kilometer/ 6.2 mile road race through Conway’s hills and hollows, and a classic New England fall parade down Main Street. Arts and crafts exhibits, exciting local musicians, mouth-watering food such as fried dough offered by local vendors, an art show featuring expert local artists, fun activities for kids and the young-at-heart, and a raffle for chances at prizes. Merchandise and home-made candy tables round out the attractions.
Since 2000, the Festival has generated over $155,000 in scholarship aid given to more than 200 Conway high school seniors. A 501(c)(3) non-profit, tax-exempt organization since 2019, the Festival of the Hills exists only through volunteer support. This status allows us to provide scholarships to support graduating seniors in whatever endeavors they undertake, whether it be college, training for a trade, or entering the job market.
The Festival requires about 120 volunteers to run effectively. Volunteer opportunities range from helping at the information booth to ‘Green Team’ tasks to running children’s games, and more! Please visit the Volunteer webpage to learn more.
The Festival committee announces Festival fundraising events and volunteer opportunities in the ‘Conway Currents,’ our website and on our social media pages. Have some ideas? Want to be part of the action? Come to a planning meeting! Meetings are held monthly on Zoom. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org for meeting dates and times.