Blackberry festival draws big crowd

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 12, 2015

By Jeanie Groh


The heat didn’t deter the crowds from attending Hill’s Minnow Farm’s first annual Blackberry Festival Saturday.

In fact, the free festival was so successful that the farm ran out of blackberries just a few hours into the festivities.

Organizer Lisa Hill estimated that more than 1,000 people passed through the farm before noon.

“We got hit really hard with pickers really early in the morning,” Hill said.

“It’s been crazy nonstop,” she added. “I don’t know when the traffic is going to slow down.”

Hill said that they had 500 parking spaces available for attendees and they were consistently full throughout the day.

The fun didn’t end when the blackberries were gone, however.

More than 80 vendors set up shop at the farm, offering a variety of goods including beauty products, décor and jewelry.

“I was expecting like 20 vendors,” Hill said.

Guests milled around, inspecting and purchasing unique goods from vendors. Yard-sized versions of checkers and Jenga kept children and the young at heart entertained, while attendees enjoyed music from Praise Grass Band, Dalton and Liam, Jabe Fisher and Courtney Puckett.

Food vendors also set up, offering everything from pimento cheese to hot meals to smoothies.

Hill’s Minnow Farm sold ice cream made with their 100-year-old hit-and-miss John Deere engine. Even with 100 gallons of blackberry ice cream, they quickly ran out of that too. Cheerwine, peach and pineapple were other popular flavors.

Jay Trublood and his sons, Tristan and Brayden, said they enjoyed the Cheerwine ice cream.

“It’s so good,” Jay said.

He said his family was enjoying the festival, and added that he was surprised by the turnout.

“It’s something a hometown does,” he said. “I wish they’d have more of them.”