The Texas Rice Festival is an annual harvest celebration held the first weekend of October. The festival was created in 1969 to honor rice farming, which is a major economic contribution in the region of Southeast Texas. It’s held in the Winnie-Stowell Park in Winnie, Texas. This time around to Texas celebrated its 47th annual Rice festival recently where there was something for everyone who attended the event. The host of activities comprised of beauty pageants, parades, rides, crafts shows, cooking classes and much more to create the carnival atmosphere. Moreover there was variety of local food for everyone to enjoy along with educational booths for kids to explore. Live music performances, horseshoe tournament, rice cooking contest and antique car show are some of the other activities that take place for the entertainment of the people attending the festival.
Visitors to the Rice Education Tent received recipe brochures, educational information, rice crispy treats, and colored pencils for kids, all provided by USA Rice. This annual event gives an opportunity for visitors to get information on rice and knowhow about rice farming which is a major crop of the region. Moreover the attendees also have the chance to spin the rice wheel to test their knowledge about U.S.-grown rice.
“My great-grandfather, grandfather, and father were all rice farmers, and my husband, Charlie, and our son, Will, are still farming rice today,” said Karen Reneau, Texas Rice Festival volunteer stationed at the Rice Education Tent. “I’m a retired teacher and elementary school principal, so education is a passion of mine, and the rice festival gives me the opportunity to teach people of all ages about the locally-grown rice – another passion of mine.” Since her retirement as an educator, Reneau had been helping out on the farm – driving tractors, working at the rice dryers, and in the crawfish fields. “I guess I’m not retired after all, but I don’t really look at the farming work as a job, because I get to work with my family each day,” added Karen.
The festival was created in 1969 to honor rice farming, a major economic contributor to the economy of southeast Texas.