Photo: Kayli Steger holds blueberries from the Nacogdoches Mill Creek Farm. Fresh blueberries will be sold again at the 22nd Annual Texas Blueberry Festival presented by Brookshire Brothers happening 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 11 in downtown Nacogdoches. (Photo by Bruce R. Partain)
Blueberries are the taste of the town
by Regina Bost, Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce intern
Blueberries, blueberries everywhere! Come to the 22nd Annual Texas Blueberry Festival presented by Brookshire Brothers for tasty treats and fun - the place for food and frolic! The event is 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 11 in historic downtown and Festival Plaza in Nacogdoches.
“The Cookin’ Up the Blues blueberry cooking demonstrations are very popular, so that is coming back to the festival,” volunteer Karen Tucker said. “Four demonstrations will run from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Commercial Bank of Texas lobby. Plus, festival guests will see Cowboy Max perform his comedy rope tricks in between each demonstration.”
Nacogdoches celebrity chefs for Cookin’ Up the Blues are cooking at 9 a.m., Amy McCloud, consultant for Brookshire Brothers; cooking at 10:15 a.m., Dolli Geyerman, owner of Olde Towne General Store; cooking at 11:30 a.m., James Harp, head chef at Hotel Fredonia; and cooking at 12:30 p.m., Merci Nicklas, owner of Merci’s World Cuisine.
Festival executive officer Polly Etta Sunda said all are invited to show off culinary skills at the Brookshire Brothers Blueberry Pie Contest. Entries must be submitted to the Brookshire Brothers festival area located outside the visitor center at 200 E. Main St. by 10 a.m. “Bring your best pie from home. There is no entry fee, but you must print and fill out the registration form found online or at the Brookshire Brothers stores,” Sunda said.
The Blueberry Pie Contest first prize is a $500 gift card to Brookshire Brothers, but the best reward will be bragging rights for the year. “Even if you don’t enter a pie, visit the contest. It could get juicy,” Sunda said.
The Ice Cream and Cobbler contests will also take place in the CBTx lobby. Bring your delicious desserts from home, and have entries turned in and the $5 entry fee paid by 10 a.m.
A limited number of hearty eaters - first come, first served - may enter the Blue Pies Smiling at Me blueberry pie eating contests, running from noon until 3 p.m. in front of City Hall. “There will be a total of six contests with three contests for ages 12 and under and three contests for all ages over 12. Certificates will be awarded,” Sunda said.
Get out of the heat and enjoy a blueberry treat at the Blueberry Hills Soda and Sweet Shoppe for a variety of delicious items such as cobbler, ice cream, lemonade and coke floats in the Regions Bank lobby.
For those that are “bad to the bone” when it comes to dominoes - go to the Nacogdoches Courthouse Annex for a Paul Kendrick 42 Tourney. Registration begins at 7:45 a.m. Entry fee is $40, and the application plus information about the Friday night warm up can be found online. Trophies and cash prizes will be given for the first top three placing teams.
Go to www.TexasBlueberryFestival.com, the official website for more information. All registration forms and event details can be found there, or call 936-560-5533.
The Texas Blueberry Festival is produced by the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce.