After the coronavirus pandemic cancelled last year’s event, the community is invited to once again take part in the 11th Denair Farm & Family Festival this Saturday.
Since 2010, the (usually) annual festival has celebrated the town’s agricultural roots with a full day of fun — and education. The street fair and parade typically draws over 5,000 people to the small town of Denair and on average raises $3,000 in high school scholarship funds annually.
“It lets us show off the town of Denair and let people know that we’re out here,” festival chairman James Shehan said. “We’re next to Turlock and people think we’re still Turlock, but we’re not!”
This year, the festival’s Farm Equipment Show in the Community Center parking lot will be expanded to feature new tractors and more. There will be milk chugging and watermelon eating contests for the kids, and pedal tractor races where participants can test their need for speed. In addition to opportunities for fun, there will be plenty of chances for youth to learn about the agriculture industry.
“This year we’ll have the mobile dairy classroom coming that provides an actual live cow milking demonstration,” Shehan said, adding that bread making demonstrations will also take place throughout the day as well as wheat and corn grinding.
“All of these activities show how things used to be done,” he said.
On Thursday, the festival committee will be beautifying the streets of Denair and will meet outside of Grandma’s Treasures at 6 p.m. The group is still searching for local veterans who would like to walk or ride in the parade. Those interested can contact Dona Casale at 209-678-7016.
The Denair Farm & Family Festival will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. this Saturday, starting with the parade at 9 a.m. Shehan encourages community members from Denair, Turlock and beyond to come out for a day of live entertainment, food, shopping and fun.
“We have a lot of people from town who come out, and a lot of people who are visitors coming to Denair for the first time,” Shehan said. “Everybody's tired of being cooped up and ready to come out and see everyone. We’re excited.”