Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Cornbread Festival

Last weekend we went to the Cornbread Festival in South Pittsburg, Tennessee; home of Lodge, the cast iron cookware manufacturer. Lodge is the major sponsor of the Festival, which stands to reason since it's all about cornbread (and beans, and all the other things that go with cornbread), and I don't think it's even possible to make cornbread in anything other than cast iron. It just wouldn't be right.

It's a pretty neat 'fest. They close Main Street to vehicular traffic, charge something like $3 entrance fee, and once inside you have access to an antique tractor show, street musicians and all kinds of stuff like that. Of course there are the standard vendors you see at any such festival: food, arts & crafts, etc. Then there is "corn bread alley" where you pay a couple of bucks to walk past a long line of servers, plate in hand, while each server doles out his or her specialty cornbread, beans, or other Southern dish. At the end of the line are servers giving out cups of milk or buttermilk; then on to a covered dining area. Wonderful!

There are a variety of special events too; corn bread eating, buttermilk chugging and homemade ice cream eating contests, cornbread judging, tours of Lodge and some of the other local foundries; and who knows what else. All in all, it's a good way to spend a Saturday in the spring.

BTW, the little girl in the second photo is my granddaughter. I think she's found a new friend!


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