It’s zucchini weekend in Windsor


Festivalgoers pick up orders of fried zucchini during the 27th annual Windsor Zucchini Festival. This year’s festival will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday in Windsor, which is seven miles east of Gainesville on County Road 234. (Brad McClenny/Staff photographer/file)

Published: Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, May 8, 2013 at 1:12 p.m.

After 29 years, zucchinis are as popular as ever in the town of Windsor. For almost three decades as part of the Windsor Zucchini Festival, the people of this 300-family community serve up fried zucchini, zucchini bread, zucchini chocolate cake, zucchini ice cream and zucchini spaghetti among other tantalizing concoctions.

Facts

Windsor Zucchini Festival

What: Annual fundraising event features zucchini-theme events, foods and live entertainment
When: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Windsor, on County Road 234 between State Roads 26 and 20
Admission: Free
Info: www.afn.org/~windsor/page2.html

But the green vegetable and the festival they dedicate to it has become a symbol of the community and a beloved tradition, according to Bobbi Walton, founder of the Windsor Zucchini Festival.

“It’s building memories for our kids,” she says. “Every child who has been raised in Windsor always asks for the day of the festival off at work at the beginning of the year, even when they’re in their 20s and 30s.”

The 29th annual Windsor Zucchini Festival runs Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the community of Windsor, which is about seven miles east of Gainesville on County Road 234. Admission to the festival is free, and a free shuttle service will provide transporation between the festival grounds and the parking areas.

Following opening ceremonies at 9:45 a.m., the festival will feature the Cook-A-Zuke contest, in which zucchinis are cooked in various ways (judging begins at noon).

Also featured in the event are such other activities as the Duke of Zuke & Zuqueenie Pageant at 11 a.m., a zucchini carving contest at 1 p.m., a zucchini cake walk at 3 p.m. and a poetry contest at 3 p.m.

Featured throughout the day will be arts and crafts, performances by the Famous Kazucchini Marching Band and live music by the group Rendition.

All proceeds from the festival go to the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department for the maintenance of its building, Walton says. Last year, the festival sold $5,000 of fried zucchini and about 400 loaves of zucchini bread.

“It’s like a reunion, like a homecoming for the community of Windsor,” she says. “It’s turned into one of the most special days of the year for us.”

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