It’s salty, plain, roasted, green and boiled. It’s always the star of the show, better known to us as Bladen County’s finest gem, “peanuts. The peanut will be celebrated the third Saturday of September as it is each year. This year’s date is Sept. 17. The festival is held in Dublin, also known as the Peanut Capital of the South. It is the home of Houston’s Peanuts, whose peanuts are shipped worldwide.
The festival kicks off at 10 a.m. with a parade. Entry for parade is free, except for queens and kings. One queen in auto is $25, two-three queens in auto, $40 or queens plus in an auto, boat or float is $50. If fees are not paid by Sept. 12, cost will be $75 the day of the parade.
The Classic Cruisers Car Show will return to the festival, along with some of North Carolina’s best food vendors, craft vendors, a barbecue lunch and plate sale, kiddie and women’s tractor pull, all day live entertainment, peanut recipe cook-off, mechanical rides, games, secret recipe hot dogs and sausage dogs. Steak and chicken fajitas have also been added to the food lineup.
The Peanut Festival t-shirt design is drawn each year by the students at Dublin Elementary School. The festival t-shirt committee selects a winner from all the drawings. This year’s winner has been chosen and the shirts are expected to go fast. The cost is $10 each and are on sale at Houston’s Peanuts in Dublin and Dublin School.
Back by popular demand will be the sell of hot boiled peanuts on site along with cold boiled, salted in the shell, roasted and green peanuts.
There are also new rides coming for 2016 along with some of the same rides and activity houses the kids look for each year. There is also large rides for the older kids and adults. There is plenty to keep the kids busy as well as something the adults will enjoy, too.
This year’s Peanut Recipe Cook-Off Contest will consist of first, second, and third place winners in three divisions: Candy, Bread and Dessert. Judging will begin at 11:30 so bring you prize winning food entry early. Set up is in the school cafeteria.
The etertainment lineup this year leads off with the Carolina Soul Band followed by the Carolina Breakers. Crossroads Ford of Lumberton is this year’s sponsor.
Each year the festival, now 24 years strong, gets bigger and better, organizers noted. “We are all about our local schools and our community. Please visit our website at www.dublinpeanutfestival.com and read “About Us”. Our committee looks forward to seeing each and every one of you have a great memorable day. There’s nothing like seeing old friends and making new ones. So come on out and enjoy a day full of fun. It wouldn’t be the same without you!”
“As for our deep commitment to our local schools and communities, none of this would be possible without our sponsors. From the smallest amount, to the largest contribution, every dollar donated helps toward one of our many projects. To become one of our sponsors, you may contact Bobbie Todd at 910-876-4884 to assist you.”
For the safety of all festival guests, no pets of any kind are allowed, except service animals. Also no food or craft vendors will be allowed to sell their food or wares along the parade route.
For more information, visit www.dublinpeanutfestival.com and click on the appropriate tab.