It’s time to “moo it, moo it” because the Hopkins County Dairy Festival is celebrating their 56th anniversary in a utterly awesome way. A week of sensational festivities will be held June 12-20. Here is a breakdown of all the events.
At noon, June 12, head down to the Celebration Plaza for the annual opening ceremonies and ribbon cutting.
“After the ceremonies the first thing no one should miss is the hot air balloon rally and glow,” said Dairy Festival Committee member Lynda Hager.
The hot air balloons will launch from 6 until 9 p.m. Friday June 12 at Shannon Oaks Church at 1113 East Shannon Road, Sulphur Springs.
To add to the excitement, the 5K Milk Run will begin at 7 p.m. that evening as 35 hot air balloons drift over head to offer a view like no other. The 5K race was created to bring community awareness of dairy farmers in Hopkins County.
“The race will have race chip timing and also begin at Shannon Oaks Church,” said Hager.
On Saturday, the party continues as hot air balloons will continue flying from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m., followed by the Dairy Festival Parade at 10 a.m.
More than a hundred floats will leave Buford Park and travel down Connally Street to Celebration Square, then turn down Gilmer Street to Lee Street before returning to the park. Unlike previous year, the parade will be an even mix different kinds of floats instead of grouping alike themes together.
“We had a huge parade last year with 117 entrees last year. We will have past Dairy Festival Queens from five, 10, 25, and 50 years ago,” said Hagar. “Anyone can enter the parade. All they need to do is show up early on the day of the parade in Buford Park.”
Organizations or parties interested in entering the parade can contact David Watson at 903-439-5020.
At the same time as the parade, the Junior Dairy Show will begin at the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center which is followed by the candidates, parents and balloon pilots at 3 p.m.
On Saturday June 20 at 4 p.m., the Texas Championship Ice Cream Freeze-Off will begin on the Civic Center grounds, and to round out the evening the hot air balloons will take their final voyages from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The festival will pick up Wednesday with a carnival on the Civic Center grounds.
“The carnival is going to be so much fun this year with every ride you can imagine,” said Dairy Festival committee member Lonnie Fox. “It will be the same group as last year and tickets will be available at Super Handy in Sulphur Springs for a discounted rate. The tickets will be available to purchase in the store by Friday, June 12.”
Finishing off a week of celebrating the benefits of the dairy industry, Texas AgriLife Extension Office will be holding a Dairy Foods Contest at 1 p.m. Saturday, June 20, in their office. The festival will then wrap up with the Queen Coronation Pageant at 7p.m. Seven girls will be showing off their talents, evening dresses and speaking abilities during the evening.
“The pageant is my favorite part of the festival,” said Hager. “The pageant is something everyone has to come out to see this year.”