2018 Ham & Yam Festival Draws Thousands

Several thousand people converged on Downtown Smithfield on Saturday for the 2018 Ham and Yam Festival organized by the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation.

2018 was the 34th consecutive year for the festival.

Attendees enjoyed food, drinks, arts and crafts, and lots of live entertainment.    One of the favorites was the Kiwanis Club of Smithfield which served country ham biscuits. There was also sweet potato cheesecake pie and this year a ham mac and cheese, sweet potato cupcakes, yam smoothies, sweet potato lemonade and sweet potato funnel cakes.

The annual barbecue cook-off was held with proceeds benefiting the Johnston County Youth Livestock.  A sweet potato pie eating contest was a favorite this year.

And the popular rubber duck race held on the Neuse River. Proceeds raised funds for Relay for Life, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.  There was even a Red Cross Bloodmobile at the festival this year collecting blood for area hospitals.