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Tebbetts prepares for annual Picnic and Muttonfest

by Anakin Bush | September 20, 2022 at 4:00 a.m.
Children rush to take their first bite of watermelon during the watermelon eating contest at the annual Tebbetts Comunity Picnic in 2018. Each child recieved a prize after finishing. (Photo by Sally Ince/FULTON SUN)

Tebbetts is ready to host its annual Picnic and Muttonfest this weekend.

Events will begin Friday and continue through Sunday at the Tebbetts Community Center. Admission is free.

The event kicks off with the food stand opening at 11 a.m. Friday. A range of food will be available for purchase. Fair staples will be available, such as funnel cakes and kettle corn. And of course, mutton will also be available at the food stand.

The food stand will open at 11 a.m.-9 p.m. again Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.

A beer stand will also be available each day from 11 a.m. to close.

At 5 p.m. Friday, there will be a classic and muscle car show featuring vehicles from local community members.

One of the new events for this year is karaoke, which will begin at 7 p.m. and continue until close for the night.

Events begin early Saturday with the Travel the Gravel 5K at 8 a.m. Registration for the run begins at 7 a.m. at the Turner Katy Trail Shelter. The 5K is free to participate in. The route will begin on the Katy Trail and continue onto gravel county roads before returning back to the trail shelter. Medals will be given to everyone who completes the race.

A pie contest will begin at 2:30 p.m., with entries for the contest due at that time. Judging for the competition will take place at 3 p.m. Only amateur bakers will be allowed to compete in the contest. Prizes will be presented to the top three pies.

A pie auction will follow later in the evening at 7 p.m.

From 3:30-8:30 p.m. will be an antique tractor show, showcasing vehicles from local community members. A children's tractor pull begins at 5:30 p.m.

Sunday is the final day of the event and will begin with church at 10 a.m. Three pastors from local area churches conduct an open-air service, which allows workers of the event to still attend church.

The Kenneth "Polly" Burre memorial fiddle contest will also take place Sunday, with registration beginning at 11 a.m. and the contest starting at noon.

The fiddle contest was coordinated by Burre until his death in 1999. The contest began again in 2014.

There are four divisions for the contest: Youth is for 17 and under, pre-open is for anyone up to 30, open is for any age and senior is for those 60 and older.

A $1,600 prize will be given out during the contest. First through third place in each division will receive cash and a trophy.

A gun raffle is part of the activities this year. The raffle is for a Ruger American 308. One hundred tickets were available for $10 each and have already sold out.

A raffle for a quilt will also be available.

Throughout the event, vendors will be available. Some of the vendors include Dana Leslie selling jams and jellies, the Tebbetts Historical Society and Nikki Lynn Piles with Crazy Goat Creations.

Other activities across the weekend include children's games, kiddie car rides and a silent auction.

Robert Mackey, assistant event-coordinator for this year's picnic, said planning for this year's event began the month after last year's picnic. They discussed what was learned from the last picnic and what can be improved going forward. Mackey said one of the improvements for this year is better consumption reports, which help maintain the budget and allow for more money to go toward charities.

All of the funds raised from the picnic go back into the community. One example of this is the upcoming benefit dinner for Sam Richards, a community member who was diagnosed with leukemia. This benefit will take place Oct. 7.

The funds also help maintain the grounds of the picnic area, Mackey said.

Mackey said they are hopeful for a good turnout this year. Kay Hord, who has worked on the picnic for many years, said many people use this event as an opportunity to meet people they otherwise wouldn't see.

Hord said she always looks forward to the pie baking contest. She always enjoys running the duck pond game for the children.

Mackey said he always looks forward to the fiddle contest, as it continues to grow each year. He said some of the biggest events of past picnics are the children's tractor pull and the pie contest, so he expects those to be big again this year.

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