Ariel Cameron takes a breath and parts her hair away from her face in March 2017 at the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce’s fourth annual strawberry pie eating contest at the Floral City Strawberry Festival. The 31st Annual Floral City Strawberry Festival comes to Floral Park on Saturday, March 3, and Sunday, March 4. This event, produced by the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce with support from Presenting Sponsor Insight Credit Union, is a salute to local agriculture that features the strawberries of local grower Ferris Farms. But the festival is about much more than strawberries. This year brings the Citrus County debut of J.R. Moore, a rising country singer from Memphis, Tennessee. And the music entertainment doesn’t stop there. The Dan Story Band, will perform, as will TJ Brown. On Saturday morning, the festival opens with the Miss Strawberry Princess Pageants for girls aged 4–6, and 7–12. This pageant is designed to be fun and enjoyable for the whole family and to help children build self-esteem. Applications to participate are on the Strawberry Festival website at www.GoStrawberryFest.com . The popular and messy pie-eating contests return on both Saturday and Sunday. There will be contests for adults, along with special contests for the little ones and maybe even super competitive “rival” contests. Sign-ups to participate in the contests will take place onsite at the festival both mornings. Children’s activities play a big role in the Strawberry Festival. Look for a petting zoo, an exciting variety of inflatables and bounce houses, the aqua tumble bubbles, a climbing rock wall and much more. Nearly 300 booths filled with craft artists, local nonprofits, and commercial vendors will make shopping a pleasure. Floral City Strawberry Festival hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 3, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 4. Entrance fee is $5 for guests 12 and older. Park free at the Citrus County Auditorium and take a shuttle to the festival location.
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