The Florida Strawberry Festival dates back to a time when life wasn’t worth celebrating. The Great Depression flattened the world at the time, forcing change. It was only then that a small town in Florida changed their primary crop from cotton to strawberries and quite simultaneously placed a star that would be forever etched on the map.
Plant City is home to 10,000 acres of strawberry farms. Since 1930 (with a brief hiatus in the 1940s) people have come from all over the world to celebrate the Florida Strawberry Festival. The event is steeped in tradition with themes of friendship, unity and american pride throughout. Although word has spread and the event is much larger than it used to be, it still hasn’t lost that down home southern charm.
Keeping true to the original purpose the Florida Strawberry Festival is very family oriented including rides, live animals, food, craft vendors and just about every way you can split a strawberry. Each day at 3:30 and 7:30 Wishfarms hosted headline entertainment. They made 3000 grandstand seats available free with admission to the festival. This years incredible line up included Shoji Tabuchi, STYX, BJ Thomas, Colt Ford, Love and Theft, Little Big Town, Thompson Square, Rascal Flatts, Charley Pride, Josh Turner, Brenda Lee, Kellie Pickler, Crystal Gayle, Lee Brice, Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Oak Ridge Boys, Third Day, John Anderson, Boys II Men, Caroline Cole, Dustin Lynch, Jerrod Niemann, Easton Corbin and The Band Perry. The weather was beautiful providing a perfect backdrop for music under the stars. Fans and artists alike had a wonderful time.
Love and Theft..”the first time we ever heard “Runaway’ on the radio was right here in Florida”
Hearing Lee Brice sing “I Drive Your Truck” is always memorable but its simply unforgettable on a day the festival sets aside to honor veterans. They asked each branch of the military to stand and the crowd was silenced as we honored those who lost children in combat.
The Band Perry opened with “DONE” and ended with and encore of thousands singing “If I Die Young”. Kimberly said “They paid us in strawberries”. Their performance was electrifying.
Thompson Square certainly won the “adorbs” award of the week. They play off each other so perfectly. They thanked the audience for their support with their latest top 5 single “Everything I Shouldn’t Be Thinking About” and asked that we take it to #1.
Little Big Town was flawless and humble. Karen said when they started they didn’t even realize you could make money doing this.
Music was amazing, food was to die for, and as you can tell from the photo above I made a new bestie…
Follow Kim Hooker on Twitter!
For a complete schedule go to cmchatlive.com/calendar
#CMchat Twitterviews are Mondays from 6-7pPT on Twitter
Google+ Twangout’s are as booked TBA