City Workers Get the Day Off For the First Annual Columbus Day Celebration

As the bands played, people from all over town came to the Columbus Riverfront, to take in the good music, good food and good family atmosphere for the city's first official Columbus Day holiday.

"The music really reaches out to what this is all about...a small town festival," said Columbus Resident Willie J. Watkins.

"It's been fun for me, to hang out with my dad, have fun, and meet new people," said 10 year old Emily Culpepper.

"My brother is playing in the band, and to just have some family time is great," said Columbus Resident Rebecca Ross.

Even though kids in the Muscogee County school system did not get the day off, many still came after class to partake in all the fun activities.

"Face painting has been a big hit with the kids, some of them have been coming back for three or four, so they have been having a blast," said Tiffany Hutchinson of Columbus Parks and Recreation.

Back in February, the Columbus City Council officially designated Columbus Day as a holiday for city workers.

Mayor Jim Wetherington says this decision has been a long time coming.

"I've been in Columbus 50 years now, and it's about time, don't you think, that we recognize Columbus Day in Columbus, Georgia," said Columbus Mayor Jim Wetherington.

City workers aren't complaining...for them, its just an unexpected day off.

Event organizers hope the city's Columbus Day celebration will continue to grow with each year.

It still remains to be seen if schools in Columbus will get the holiday off in the coming years.