Hope and Washington Watermelons

Zoie Clift

The 35th annual Hope
Watermelon Festival is this weekend! (Aug 11-13).

Watermelons have long been a calling card for the
city. The Festival itself dates back to the mid-1920s when the city staged a
one-day annual festival.

World Record watermelon grower Lloyd Bright has a site where you can see
historic photos of large watermelons grown in town over the years at www.giantwatermelons.com.  


In other watermelon news, we just
got word that the Old Washington Farmers’ Market is holding the first Great
Pumpkin Commonwealth (GPC) sanctioned watermelon weigh-off in the area September
3  from 9-3 behind Washington Town
Hall in Washington, Arkansas.

Some folks grow watermelons for
the table, and others grow them for the market. But there’s a third class of
watermelon growers whose only concern is the scale - giant watermelon
growers. “The Bright family of Hope has brought a wonderful legacy to our area
with their world record breaking watermelons and we honor their commitment and
dedication to the watermelon heritage of Hope by holding a watermelon
weigh-off in their own backyard,” said Stephanie Buckley, Old Washington
Farmers’ Market Manager.

Watermelon growers from all over
the South are invited to participate. There will also be an arts and crafts
fair, music, kids games, and of course, local watermelon to taste. Historic
Washington State Park will have tours available throughout the day and Williams’
Tavern Restaurant will be open for lunch.  For more details call Stephanie Buckley at 870-983-2443. 

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