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Peanut festival held later this year
Vendors, parade entries, runners invited
081917_PEANUT_FESTIVAL_01.jpg
In this file photo from 2017, Tony Murray gets some freshly boiled peanuts ready for hungry customers while working for the Cook Shack out of Blackshear during the the annual Peanut Festival in Brooklet. - photo by By SCOTT BRYANT/staff

What: 29th Annual Brooklet Peanut Festival
When: Sept. 15, from 10 a.m. until 10:30 p.m.
Where: Brooklet

The Brooklet Community Development Association hopes to cool things down a little by hosting the 29th Annual Brooklet Peanut Festival a month later this year. The festival takes place Sept. 15, a Saturday.

In the past, the family-oriented event celebrating the town’s rich agricultural history has been held the third Saturday in August, but “it keeps getting hotter and hotter in August,” said BCDA chairman Randy Newman.

People were getting “stressed out and overheated” during the day-long festival, in spite of fans, shade and plenty of refreshments available. The group hopes the weather might be a bit more like fall in mid-September, he said.

Originally, the festival was scheduled before school started, but when the local school system changed its schedule, classes started in early August, he said.

Newman said over 20,000 people visit the Brooklet Peanut Festival every year for the food, fun and of course, the peanuts.

 Benefits the city

The annual event began as a way to raise money for Christmas decorations for Brooklet, and “it just grew,” Newman said. Now, the funds raised help keep the town beautiful. The public gazebo is maintained, and the fountain will be replaced this year, he said. The festival proceeds also support two scholarships presented to Southeast Bulloch High School students each year.

The event was once held in downtown Brooklet but outgrew the space.  The city eventually bought the spot where the festival is held today. The BCDA also contributed part of the funds to finish the city’s pavilion at the event grounds.

The Brooklet Peanut Festival begins with a parade at 10 a.m. as the grounds open. Throughout the day visitors enjoy live entertainment, kiddie amusement rides, arts and crafts, vendors and food booths featuring barbecue, sweets, icy treats and plenty of peanuts; boiled, fried, roasted, and in an assortment of delicious baked goods and candies.

A 5K Peanut Run/Walk will be held in August, before the festival.

At noon the slow tractor races (where antique tractors are showcased) begin, with drivers seeing how slow they can go without choking down. There are kiddie pedal tractor races, too.

Later, as the sun starts to sink, the street dance gets underway at 7 p.m. with performances by popular bands. The dance – and the day – end at 10:30 p.m.

Volunteers offer free shuttle service from parking areas to the stage area.

 To participate

 There are several ways to be a part of the Brooklet Peanut Festival aside from just enjoying it as a visitor. The BCDA welcomes volunteers (they meet the last Monday of each month at the old police station in downtown Brooklet.)

In order to sign up for the 5K Peanut Run/Walk, held on Aug. 20 this year, contact Toby at 912-823-3668.

To enter the parade, call Newman at 912-842-2325. For information in having an arts and crafts booth, call 912-481-1742.

Food vendors can call Cliff at 912-321-7367. Those who would like to be part of the entertainment can call Ellen at 912-687-1409, and to enter the tractor races, call Lloyd at 812-842-2160.

For more information, access the Brooklet Peanut Festival website online at www.brookletpeanutfestival.com.

 

Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.

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