Boats, Crews Prepare for Batteau Festival

Lynchburg, VA - Lynchburg - Eighteen of the boats participating in Saturday morning's James River Batteau festival are already at the boat landing. The boats and their crews will spend more than a week on the 120 mile trip, which will end near Richmond. While on their journey, crew members will serve as re-enactors by wearing costumes and traveling back in time to 1770. "This period of time with the Batteau festival is an interesting period, when the river was really the super-highway of the time, taking tobacco from the fields in the Central Virginia area down to Richmond. Combine that with the fact that is always just fun to spend eight days on the James River," said Ralph Smith, the chairman of the James River Batteau Festival. There will also be a James River Batteau rodeo on Friday at 5 p.m. at Riveredge Park in Madison Heights.