With overcast skies and the threat of rain looming over the city of White Hall on Saturday, residents and area locals showed up for White Hall’s 53rd annual Founders Day. The two-day celebration featured events from years past, along with this year’s new entry, the “White Hall’s Got Talent Y’all” competition.
As a continued celebration from Friday night, Saturday festival attendees started the day the same way as last year – with an annual pancake breakfast sponsored by the White Hall Noon Lions Club.  The annual parade and backyard barbeque followed. The park was filled with people young and old who had the option to fill their faces with food from the various food trucks and shop vending booths set up by local business and organizations offering everything from graphic t-shirts to Tupperware. There was also a corner of the park designated for games and activities for children, which was placed strategically next to the funnel cake and cotton candy food truck.
The highlight of this year’s festival was the “America’s Got Talent” local clone “White Hall’s Got Talent Y’all” talent competition, which gave contestants the opportunity to go head-to-head for the grand prize of $3,000. As the different acts took to the stage, people began walking to the park and stood and sat on the lawn cheering on their neighbors and family members.
Jodie Jolly, an organizer for the talent event, said that to keep the completion fair it was important that the judges of the competition be nonresidents of White Hall.  Although the judges aren’t residents of the city, they were not strangers to the crowd. They included: Pamela Smith of Little Rock, Stephanie Hobbs from The Point 94.1 and Renee Shapiro, the state’s first broadcast film critic and account executive with KATV in Little Rock.
Just as “America’s Got Talent” has a lively host who keeps the show going, White Hall’s talent competition did as well.  Danny Joe Crofford, producer of the radio show “The Show With No Name” on Little Rock’s 103.7 The Buzz, kept the crowd entertained in between talent acts by bringing everyone to their feet with a t-shirt cannon. This set young people running and jumping over each other to catch the freebies.
Sha’Diamond Treadwell, a ninth grader at White Hall High School, said she didn’t have any friends performing in the show but still had talent favorites.
“There was a boy that rapped about Jesus – that was really good, but my favorite part of the show was when the dance and cheer teams performed,” Treadwell said.
The winner of the $3,000 grand prize was dancers from the Mrs. Tania Dance Factory: Isabelle Soto, Caroline Taylor, Grace Rhodes, Reghan Hegwood, Cassidy Jones and Kennedy Canada. The second place winner was Jeremy Stevens. Grant Bias took third place.
“It was a great show. It was our first time and we have a little tweaking to do but it will be even better next year,” Jolly said.