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The North Carolina Whirligig Festival is an all-inclusive, two day arts festival that showcases the arts of the region, including the NC Folk art – Whirligigs – created by local artist, Vollis Simpson. The Whirligigs are 20-50 feet in height and they incorporate highway and road signs, HVAC fans, bicycles, ceiling fans, various woods, steel rods, milkshake mixers and many more such materials form the support and moving parts. Simpson also cut decrepit road signs into one-inch and larger squares so that the Whirligigs would be reflective at night.

The festival is a community celebration in Historic Downtown Wilson of people and art in motion, annually, on the first full weekend in November. Specializing in recognizing our Wilson heritage and community by showcasing active artists, who feature works designed with re-purposed, recycled and reused materials, as the namesake artist did with his whimsical windmills.

The North Carolina Whirligig Festival is planned and implemented by an all-volunteer community committee. Those that serve on the committee range from small business owners, to bakers, ministers, salesmen, medical professionals, and educators. Each member volunteers their time and enthusiasm to the North Carolina Whirligig Festival. We do it because we love our community. Communications with vendors and attendees is handled as a team.


Email Address




Email remains the best form of communication for the Festival Committee. But, we will try to return phone calls in a reasonable time frame as well.


Mailing Address

North Carolina Whirligig Festival
PO Box 2124
Wilson, NC 27894

Learn More About Whirligigs


A Volunteer Application is available for volunteers age 15 and older.

Groups of volunteers are encouraged to volunteer too!

Volunteering at the Wilson Whirligig Festival is a great way to meet new friends, learn about what happens behind the scenes of the festival and give back to your community.

The Festival accepts applicants who are 15 years old and older. Volunteering can be counted as community service hours for school and work. Volunteer opportunities can vary from light work to heavy lifting. All of the volunteer categories are listed on the volunteer application.

Planning Committee

The North Carolina Whirligig Festival is coordinated by the Festival Board of Directors and Festival Planning Committee. Both are comprised of volunteer citizens dedicated to bring the best possible festival activities to Wilson. The mission of the festival is to create a community driven festival celebrating diversity through arts, crafts and culture. Planning meetings are held year-round and open to all Wilson citizens.

We are seeking to add new members to the Board. How about you?

Why join the Planning Committee?

  • We are an award winning festival. Be part of a group that aims high!

  • Laugh and enjoy being on a board. So many are boring - we are not - we promise!

  • Give back to the community. Nothing makes us happier that seeing people smile.

  • Whirligigs! We got them!

Join us each month- Festival Planning Meetings:

2nd Thursday of each month
NC Whirligig Festival Headquarters, 316 Douglas Street
12:00 pm (bring your own lunch)

For more information, contact the Festival Coordinator, Theresa Mathis by email at:

PET POLICY: We recommend that families leave their pets at home. While you may enjoy attending, the festival atmosphere can be overwhelming for many pets. And, some just don’t play well with others.  If you choose to bring your pet, you must follow the City of Wilson leash laws. Any pet causing a disturbance must be removed immediately. All pet owners are responsible for their pet and will be held accountable for any actions involving their pet.

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