Zukes of Windsor: Annual festival returns


Elke Weibelzahl-Kakarigi carves a zucchini for the carving contest during the 2011 Zucchini Festival in Windsor.

Brad McClenny/Staff photographer/file
Published: Thursday, May 10, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 7:31 p.m.

You don’t have to have a taste for zucchini to enjoy the 28th Annual Windsor Zucchini Festival — the sights and sounds alone of the annual event saluting the summer squash will satiate the senses, organizers say.

Facts

Windsor Zucchini Festival

What: 28th annual event with themed contests, arts and crafts, food, entertainment, children’s area and more.
When: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Windsor Fire Department, 1400 SE County Road 234, Windsor; seven miles east of Gainesville on County Road 234 between State Roads 26 and 20.
Admission: Free
Info: http://www.afn.org/~windsor/page2.htm

Planned Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the tiny hamlet east of Gainesville on Country Road 234, the festival will have countless bushels of the yellow or green squash served up in mouthwatering ways from zucchini cornbread and ice cream to the ever-in-demand fried zucchini. But among the day’s other festivities, which includes 70 arts and crafts vendors, live music and children’s activities including pony rides, will be the Duke of Zuke and Miss Zuqueenie pageants and the ever-popular zucchini carving contest.

“The carving contest has gotten to where we have some really neat things,” says Bobbi Walton, president of the festival committee and a co-founder of the event that began in 1984. “Last year this lady did a church; she actually took zucchinis and carved out a church with all the little things outside.

“People carve different things,” Walton says. “They’ll put it on a little flatboard and make little houses and things.”

The arts and crafts vendors spread out on the grounds of the Windsor Volunteer Fire Deparmtent, for which the Zucchini Festival has become its largest annual fundraiser, will offer goods from wood and leather to paintings and other works of art along with everything in between.

If your tastebuds are set for morsels of all colors, organizers will be ready for that as well: Chicken dinners will be available as will all sorts of other foods. And the festival’s fried zucchini is an ever-popular choice of patrons at the festival, Walton says.

“Last year by 1 p.m. we had sold $3,200 worth of fried zucchini. That’s a lot of fried zucchini.”

Contact Bill Dean at 374-5039 or at bill.dean@gvillesun.com and follow on Twitter at @SceneBillDean.

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