Henleyfield Fall Festival: November 7 – 9

Published 10:47 pm Saturday, September 20, 2008

Mark your calendars! November 7, 8, and 9 are the dates for the second annual Henleyfield Fall Festival on the grounds of our community center, located on Hwy 43S just south of Henleyfield-McNeill Road.

Last year’s festival, which attracted people from throughout Pearl River County and beyond, was a huge success. This year, we have expanded the activities and entertainment, and believe our schedule will have even wider appeal. We’ve added a youth horse show, special activities for children, and a community/church day. See details listed under each day.

The Festival is sponsored by HENLEYFIELD.COMmunity, Inc., a not-for-profit corporation chartered in 2005. We now have more than 140 members. Since our charter, we have made significant improvements to our community center and grounds through donations, volunteer labor, and help from the county. We’ve lobbied to bring DSL and improved cell phone service to the area. Next year we’d like to focus on building a youth athletics program and using our refurbished ball field.

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Our major goal has been to build a 40’ x 60’ covered pavilion on the community center property. With funds raised last year and proceeds from this year’s festival, we plan to start work on the pavilion by the end of the year.

So we’re inviting you to gather your families, friends, and neighbors and come out to enjoy the festival and get to know this place called “Henleyfield.” As you’ll see, there’s something for everyone. Admission to the grounds is free, as are most activities, but some events require advance registration and an entry fee.

Friday, November 7, is Heritage Day. We’ll honor those in our community who are more than 80 years old and hear, from them, snippets of history that we can pass down. Our community is comprised of those who were born here (“rooted”), those who married into families here (“grafted”) and those who found their way here on their own and now call Henleyfield home (“transplanted”). We celebrate them all, because we know it takes roots, grafts, and transplants to make a beautiful garden. There will be lunch and entertainment. Plants and commemorative items will be available for purchase.

Also on Friday, the long-anticipated Henleyfield Heritage Cookbook will be introduced (see description below).

Saturday, November 8, is Family Fun Day. Planned activities include 10K and 5K races and a half-mile fun run for kids, with free tee shirts and breakfast for all paid entrants. We are grateful once again for the support of the Pine Belt Pacers, an RRCA running/walking club, in staging this event.

We will repeat the well-received fishing rodeo for young people at a local pond, and we’ve added a youth horse show for juveniles 17 and under at Mill Creek Stables, just off Henleyfield-McNeill Road. In addition to showing several categories and age groups, activities will include boot scrambles, a goat ribbon race, ride-a-buck, and other games and events.

The races, fishing rodeo, and horse show require a registration fee, and prizes will be awarded.

Also new this year is the “Kids’ Corral,” a play area for children and young people featuring new and exciting inflatables, rides, and games. The Kids’ Corral will be supervised by the youth group from a local church.

A garden symposium will feature speaker Pat Drackett, Senior Curator and On-Site Director at the Crosby Arboretum. Throughout the day there will be live entertainment. The Boulevard Cruisers will display antique and collectible cars, and sculpture by renowned artist and current Henleyfield resident, Richard Swensen, will be exhibited. The Henleyfield Heritage Cookbook, plants, and commemorative items will be on sale.

In addition, Nellie Neal, AKA “Garden Mama,” who was a featured speaker at last year’s Garden Symposium, will attend the Festival. She will bring copies of her newest book to autograph, and generously has agreed to donate a portion of the sales to Henleyfield.COMmunity.

Sunday, November 9, is Community Day. We’re bringing back “dinner on the grounds.” Do you remember when you used to have supper after church and you couldn’t wait for Aunt Mary’s banana pudding, or Cousin Donna’s fried chicken? Keep that in mind, because we’ll be selling lunches beginning at noon. Add some great gospel music as area church congregations participate in a community sing-a-long. We’ll welcome newcomers to the community and there will be a special recognition of our veterans. Cookbooks, plants, and commemorative items will be on sale until 4 p.m.

Ground Breaking

The Henleyfield Fall Festival will end with a beginning: at 3 p.m. there will be a brief ground breaking ceremony for the construction of the new pavilion. Everyone is invited to join us, along with local, county, and regional dignitaries, in this celebration.

Introducing the Henleyfield Heritage Cookbook

We are pleased to announce that our newly-published Henleyfield Heritage Cookbook will be available for sale all three days at the festival. The book contains recipes gathered from many cooks in our area, and photographs illustrating local history. Bound in a unique easel-style cover, the collection makes a wonderful gift for all occasions. The cookbooks are $15 each, and may be pre-ordered. Send your check for as many copies as you like, payable to Henleyfield.Community, C/O Ann Bell, 81 James Jarrell Road, Carriere, 39426. Supplies are limited.

For more information, visit www.henleyfield.com. A phone number will be published in the near future, and watch for posters, brochures, and entry forms in many locations throughout the area.