Some vendors who regularly attended the September festival made other plans after the state sent a letter saying the festival was canceled. But so far, the Constitution Square Arts Fest has 146 exhibitors.
It has, however, taken a number of people to do the job Willoughby did by herself.
"Replacing Brenda is an impossible task. It has taken a committee of 25 or more to do all the tasks that Brenda did as a staff of one," said Julie Wagner, executive director of the Heart of Danville Main Street Program and a Kentucky Certified Mainstreet Manager. "We knew going into this that not one person could tackle all that she did. We were just smart enough to realize that her big shoes needed to be filled by many volunteers.
"Brenda was the face and identity in some respects of the festival. Naturally, our goal was to honor all that she has done by keeping the historic and educational aspects of the event in place."
In keeping with the previous festival, Friday's School Day is intact. It will feature activities specifically geared toward children. A variety of musicians are scheduled throughout the weekend, playing dulcimers, guitars and fiddles, and performing country, folk and gospel music.
The artisans will exhibit and sell wares ranging from traditional — quilts, baskets and pottery — to contemporary — sculpture, jewelry and glass. Other crafts include Shaker reproductions, antiques, photography, gourd art and metalwork.
Wagner said this year's festival planners are hoping to carry on the tradition established by Willoughby.
"Brenda was a genius in marrying the commercial portion of the festival with the historic interpretation that Constitution Square stands for," she explained. "We hope to continue her legacy as we strive to grow the event.
"This year, we have 146 participants. Next year, we hope to add more and slowly grow the event into the signature arts and crafts festival in Central Kentucky."
Friday, Sept. 18
9 a.m.-9:40 a.m.: Civil War re-enactors
9:45-10:30 a.m.: Civil War re-enactors
10:30-11:15 a.m.: Thomas Freese, storytelling
11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.: Mark Comley, magician
12:15-1 p.m.: Thomas Freese, storytelling
1-4 p.m.: recorded music
3-4:45 p.m.: Josh Reardon, sponsored by Prudential Guerrant Real Estate
5:45-7:15 p.m.: Miss Constitution Square Arts Fest Pageant
7:30-8:45 p.m.: Frankley Scarlet, sponsored by Community Trust Bank
7:30-9:30 p.m.: The Brantley Gilbert Band, country music
10:30-11:15 a.m.: Civil War re-enactors
11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.: Civil War re-enactors
Saturday, Sept. 19
10-11 a.m.: Robert Tincher, early Kentucky Celtic music
11 a.m.-noon: George Rogers Clark Chautauqua, sponsored by Economic Development Partnership
Noon-1:30 p.m.: Shady Creek, bluegrass, sponsored by Danville Office Equipment
2-3 p.m.: First Baptist Male Choir
3-4 p.m.: Henry Clay Chautauqua, sponsored by Convention & Visitors Bureau
4-5 p.m.: Robert Tincher
5-5:30 p.m. Humane Society Dog Show
6-7:30 p.m.: Blind Carbon Copy, gospel, sponsored by Cottage B&B
8-10:30 p.m.: Jim Duff, country and rock
Noon-5 p.m.: Russ Childers and Friends
5-5:30 p.m.: Tumbleweed Line Dancers and Cloggers
Sunday, Sept. 20
Noon-1:30 p.m.: Conrad Shiba, folk music, sponsored by Centre College
1:30-2 p.m.: Jane Todd Crawford play
2-3 p.m.: The Obsessions, sponsored by Farmers National Bank
2:45-3 p.m.: Danville High School cheerleaders, in park
3-4 p.m.: Adolph Rupp Chautauqua, sponsored by Heart of Danville
4-5 p.m.: Advocate Brass Band, brass music and American favorites
5 p.m.: Constitution Square 5K Run
11 a.m.-noon: Russ Childers & Friends
Noon-1:30 p.m.: Dan Keaton Duet
1:30-2 p.m.: Humane Society Dog Show
2-4 p.m.: Dulcimers