Plant City in Florida supplies three quarters of the country with strawberries during the winter months thanks to its abundant agricultural industry and subtropical climate all year round. Throughout the year, this produce is also transported regularly across the United State, as well as to international markets. It is therefore not particularly surprising that one of the biggest events in the city’s calendar is its annual Strawberry festival which attracts visitors not just from around the state and the country but from all over the world. This is usually held around the end of Feb for two week into early March and is open from ten in the morning until ten at night offering a wide range of activities, entertainment and educational information that will delight visitors of all ages. Of course, there is plenty of opportunity also to sample the taste of these sweet, succulent berries on their own or in a variety of different food products from sweets and pastries to deserts, preserves, drinks and sauces as well as many exhibitions providing popular recipes as well as more unusual methods of eating or cooking the traditional strawberry.
There are many livestock shows for those involved in the agricultural industry themselves and other related business demonstrations and events however this is first and foremost an event that could be enjoyed by the whole family so much of the entertainment and activities are aimed at kids and adults who want to enjoy a fun filled day out. From arts and crafts to magic shows and music, there is so much to see and do that many people enjoy this festival at their leisure over several days. A wide selection of acts provide live music throughout the day too include one of the festival’s firm favorites – The Sweeney Family Band – who sing, dance and provide entertaining revues following a country, comedy theme. Before you know it, this amicable bunch that consist of Slim, Skeeter and Little Buck will have you stomping your feet and clapping your hands as they play you some folk music and traditional bluegrass tunes. If this Grand Ole Opry style is not to your tastes, then how abut the rich baritone voice of Jay Taylor and his band with their own take on rock n roll favorites like Elvis, Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison along with their own versions of modern country hits like those by artists like Garth Brooks or Keith Urban. The state’s Irish contingency are always well represented too offering everything from fiddles and traditional ballads to Irish dancing and Gaelic musicians.
Of course no festival would be complete without some Karaoke and there are plenty of opportunities to bring out the Rock star within you with the Open Qualifying for Talent Quest Florida – the world’s largest regional competition of its kind – being held here at the Florida Strawberry Festival. Every year, wannabe singers from across the state compete against each other for the opportunity to compete at the national stage where they could win $3,500 and have the privilege of performing for some of the country’s top music producers to win a recording contract.