Last year, organizers of the first-ever Arkansas Cornbread Festival expected about 800, maybe 1000 folks to show up. They ended up with over 3000 hungry cornbread enthusiasts.
Lesson learned. We Arkansans love us some cornbread!
Tomorrow, Saturday, Nov. 3, lovers of the sweet (or not!) southern staple will descend upon South Main Street in Little Rock to enjoy live music, shopping, and of course, cornbread.
The event was created as a way to introduce folks to all the nifty things we already have available on South Main, such as an urban garden, a soda shop, unique shopping, restaurants and entertainment venues.
Plenty of ‘bread and sides will be available for sampling, offered up by professional and amateur competitors. The entries are in the categories of Traditional, Non-Traditional and Sweet.
Alas, just as last year, I had grand plans to enter myself, and just…didn’t. (New job! Cooking gigs! Exhaustion!) But I do plan on going over to try other folks’ stuff. If you’re gluten-free like me, I know of at least one cornbread that will be safe: Dempsey Bakery will be there as a competitor in the Sweet category. And I’ll wager that at least one or two of the Traditional category entries will be all-corn, as well.
The event was originally to include a lecture and book signing by Dr. Jessica Harris, author of several books about African-American cuisine and its fascinating history. But Hurricane Sandy stepped in and changed plans for the New York author. So give Dr. Harris some love and check out her latest book, High on the Hog: A Culinary Journey from Africa to America, at the Museum Store at Historic Arkansas Museum.
Visit the event website for lists of all the musical acts, cornbread competitors, arts and crafts (and clothing and more) vendors, recipes and all that. See you there!
Arkansas Cornbread Festival
Saturday, November 3
11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
South Main Street, Downtown Little Rock
Between 13th and 16th Streets
Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for kids day of the event
Discount advance tickets ($7 adults, $3 kids) are available online until 5 p.m. Friday