Gibson Receives Top Honor
Marie Stone Gibson of Lumberton was bestowed the Holmes-McBride award at the Recent North Carolina Association of Agricultural Fairs (NCAOAF) convention in Cary. This is the highest honor given to a Fair Member. Two awards are given each year, one for a Fair Member and one for an Associate Member (fair business such as a carnival or concessionaire). The winner must be a living member, or past member, of the North Carolina Association of Agricultural Fairs who has been consistently active in the fair industry for a number of years. Marie Gibson has been an active member of the Robeson Regional Agricultural Fair, and NCAOAF, for almost 30 years and at one time served on the NCAOAF board.
The Holmes-McBride award is given in memory of two men who were dedicated to the fair industry; James Holmes, Past-President of the Association and Manager of the Durham County Fair for many years and Woodie McBride, longtime Associate Member Concessionaire and Carnival Operator. Both men helped many newcomers with their vast knowledge of the fair industry and always had a dollar to lend someone who was down. In honor of the service rendered, the Holmes/McBride Award is given to an individual for distinguished achievement in, or contribution to, the Fair Industry.
Marie Gibson, this year’s winner, was one of the first female members of the Robeson Regional Agriculture fair and has mentored a number of new members during her tenure with the fair. As her grandson said, when Marie was presented with the award, ”Grams is passionate about the fair and her community. We do not plan births, family reunions, vacations, or events during the first two weeks of October because we know the fair is going on and she is committed to being there.” When receiving the award Marie thanked her family and her fair family saying, “Until you work in the fair industry you don’t understand the passion and commitment it takes to put together what we put together. It truly makes us a family which makes this award, from you, an even bigger honor.”