For the 51st time, Hopkins County will spend the next week celebrating its local dairy industry with the Hopkins County Dairy Festival. It is a week full of music, activities, pageantry and fun.
It is, in short, our heritage in full bloom.
The activities kick-off in full force Friday evening with the hot air balloon rally at Shannon Oaks Church. The event, which will feature live music this year, is scheduled to run from 6 p.m. till 9 p.m. For those not able to make the launching, a simple glance upward this evening should give most a good view of the festivities.
The balloons will take to the sky again Saturday morning (around 6:30 a.m.), followed by a full day of activities, including the annual Dairy Festival parade at 10 a.m. (remember the altered route this year — Heritage Square is out and Davis Street to Dabbs Street is in) and the 9th Annual Ice Cream Freeze-Off starting at 4 p.m. at the Civic Center.
For the kids, the carnival will roll into town starting Wednesday and will be open the remainder of the week.
And last but not least, next Saturday will feature the Jr. Dairy Show at 10 a.m. at the Civic Center, followed by the Dairy Foods contest and the annual Dairy Festival Pageant at 7 p.m. Saturday evening.
The dairy industry, once mighty and basically all encompassing in our little corner of the world, may have slipped in numbers and force over the last many years, but the people of this county have always held the traditions of that industry sacred — and we really never see that changing. While dairying may no longer be the driving force of Hopkins County, it will always be our heart and soul.
Come out celebrate our heritage this week. You'll be glad you did.
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