MARION, La. (KNOE 8 News) - This weekend Union Parish will be rocking to this year's Louisiana Mayhaw Festival.
The festival in Marion began in the early 80's and is normally held on the second weekend of May each year.
The Mayhaw tree is part of the Hawthorne family and generally grows near streams and swamps. Its fruit looks like small crabapples and it grows in the only South, between Eastern Texas and the Florida Panhandle. The heaviest concentrations are normally in Grant Parish, in the Winnie, Texas, area and in Mississippi's Pearl River swamps.
The Mayhaw's fame comes mostly from the jams, jellies, wines and cakes that are made from it.
In Marion, this coming Saturday, there'll be a parade including horses, floats, four wheelers, golf carts and classic cars (and pretty much anything else that drives up at the right moment). Entertainment usually includes singers, dancers, cloggers, choirs, arts and crafts, a turkey calling contest, a horseshoe tournament, lawnmower races, an egg toss, and, of course, a mayhaw cooking contest, four wheelers, horses, floats, golf carts, and classic cars are all welcome. Throughout the day on Saturday, the crowd will be entertained by arts and crafts, various singers, dancers, cloggers, choirs, and other talent. Activities include a turkey calling contest, a horseshoe tournament, a mayhaw spitting contest, an egg toss, a treasure hunt, a talent show and lawnmower races where high performance lawn mowers are pitted against each other for top prizes and bragging rights. And, of course, the obligatory mayhaw jelly cooking contest.