Thursday, 09 April 2009 00:00

1st Annual Palm Harbor Citrus Festival

Written by  Robin Husbands-Cauchi
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The Greater Palm Harbor Area Chamber of Commerce and Old Palm Harbor Main Street, Inc. have joined forces to present the 1st Annual Palm Harbor Citrus Festival. The festival’s mission is to “celebrate our heritage” and is sure to uphold the founders’ style vision with the many activities planned based on the heritage of Palm Harbor.

Palm Harbor was founded in the mid 1800’s and was best known for its citrus groves, closely followed by vast cattle ranches.  Some of the pastimes were fishing, horseshoe tossing and anything musical.  The music of the time was folk, bluegrass and gospel.

The Festival opens on Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 at 5pm with a carnival only on Thursday and Friday, and beginning Saturday, April 25th through Sunday, April 26th, the event will be in full swing with four blocks of activities, music, historical readings and vignettes, a “citrus” bake-off, “Dancing with the Palm Harbor Stars” and the crowning of the first Miss Palm Harbor Citrus Festival Queen. 
To remain true to the heritage many of the activities are representative of the era. You can expect to find a horseshoe pit, lemon toss and an orange-peeling contest, to name a few! The Palm Harbor Citrus Festival Committee is chaired by Mona Johnson with co-chair Terry Overton and is under the management of Connie Davis, CEO of the Greater Palm Harbor Chamber of Commerce and Robin Husbands-Cauchi, Executive Director of OldPalm Harbor Main Street, Inc. The creative Activities Team is directed by Randy Nilsson, Executive Director of the Palm Harbor YMCA. 

The Palm Harbor Historical Museum has organized historical readings and pioneer reenactments that will cater to all, but are of special interest to children and will be held in the historical Rheba Sutton White Chapel.  Harlan Weikle and Sallie Parks have selected the Lion’s Paw and Yesteryear, I lived in Paradise as the two books written by Palm Harbor residents to be read.  There will be artifact rubbing and a game of “Pig Pen”.

The music has been carefully selected by Sharon Naumann and will hold true to the time with bluegrass, folk and gospel being performed by Scotty Lee and the Treble Hooks, Knapp’s Creek, Devine & DiNella, SouthWind, Crystal Beach Sunset Picker’s Circle, Joel & Dakota, the Crystal Beach String Band and Paul Dowers!

The 1st Annual Palm Harbor Citrus Festival promises something for everyone because the committee has also included a bake-off for amateur bakers, featuring the Citrus theme, to be held in Harbor Hall and organized by Holly Bird. 

Let’s not forget “Dancing with the Palm Harbor Stars” orchestrated by Lania Berger of Arthur Murray Dance Studios.  The Palm Harbor Stars that will be dancing are Peggy O’Shea with the Pinellas County School Board, Pinellas County Commissioner Susan Latvala and Chief Jim Angle of Palm Harbor Fire & Rescue.

The 1st Annual Palm Harbor Citrus Festival will be held in the Downtown Historic District of Palm Harbor.  The event will be held in the area that encompasses Alternate 19 to County Road 1 (Omaha), and from Nebraska Avenue to Michigan Avenue. For more information you may contact the Greater Palm Harbor Chamber of Commerce at 727-784-4287 or Old Palm Harbor Main Street, Inc. at 727-787-4700.  You can also visit the official Palm Harbor Citrus Festival website at http://www.palmharborcitrusfestival.com/ .
Read 898 times Last modified on Wednesday, 21 October 2009 11:17