(BROWNSTOWN) - The 46th edition of former MelonFest has a new name the Jackson County Watermelon Festival.
Esther Hall, president of the festival board says officials voted to return to using the name when the festival was first founded.
The festival will officially begin at 5 p.m. Friday with an opening ceremony on the stage on Sugar Street behind the courthouse. There will be food available at noon that day at the Jackson County History Center at Sugar and Walnut streets.
A variety of new events have been added, and a couple of popular ones, including a cake walk at 6 p.m. Friday and 3 p.m. Saturday, will return. Organizers also plan to hold a beanbag tournament at 7 p.m. Friday on the courthouse lawn.
One of the new events planned for this year is a watermelon sack race at 7 p.m. Friday in front of the courthouse. Children participating in the event will be able to carry the melon while adult participants will have to carry it in their sack.
On Saturday, the Brownstown Exchange Club will sponsor the annual 5K Run/Walk at 8a.m. Registration begins at 7 a.m.
The cutest baby contest will be held at 9 a.m. with registration for that event beginning at 8:15 a.m.
The royal court will be crowned at 10 a.m.
The parade will begin at 1 p.m. Other events Saturday include a watermelon recipe contest at 3:45 p.m. inside the courthouse; a Mr. Melon Head contest at 4 p.m.; a watermelon seed spitting contest at 5:30 p.m.; and a bubble gum-blowing contest at 6 p.m.
Besides the parade, the other highlight of the festival will be a fireworks display at 10 p.m. Saturday.
Captain Backfire Band will perform at 8:30p.m. Friday; Stars and Stripes Dancers at 2 p.m. Saturday; Lonesome Crow at 6:30 p.m. Saturday; Six Ways to Sunday at 8 p.m. Saturday; and Acoustic Crossroads at 3 p.m. Sunday.
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