By the time mid-February rolls around, folks in our Natural North Florida region are really tired of all those “cold” 50-degree nights and 70-degree days. Yes, we’re spoiled!
In February we’ll have a few quick, wet and windy, cold fronts move through the area and we’ll have to bundle up with a sweater and maybe even long pants. But those cold snaps don’t last long.
Even if it’s cold for a day or so, there are plenty of things to do, especially to attend and participate in one or several of our local festivals. We have many, and all have different emphases–art, food and music are the most popular. We even have one dedicated to the lowly fiddler crab and another to the earthworm!
Steinhatchee is a small fishing village in southern Taylor County, 30 miles from Perry and about 60 miles from the region’s largest city, Gainesville. There, every “Valentines” weekend (April 17 & 18 in 2017), locals hold the annual Steinhatchee Fiddler Crab Festival. It includes fun events, including a parade, food and drink, a chili cook-off, a fishing tournament, music–and of course, fiddler crab races.
While the Fiddler Crab Festival is on of the earliest springtime festivals in our region, there are several others to note.
Florida State Bluegrass Festival & Chili Cook-Off
The Florida State Bluegrass Festival started in Taylor County in 2000 and has thrived ever since. This very popular three day event promises a toe-tapping good time. With some of the best bluegrass performers in the country entertaining the audience each year, this event offers free bluegrass music workshops (with ticket purchase) for adults and children as well as great food, arts and crafts and a Chili Cook-off. In addition to three days packed with amazing performers, this event is also home to the Florida State Bluegrass Music Championship Finals Competition. Finalist performers travel here from all over Florida to compete for the state title. See some of the best of the best during this weekend. Camping available and tickets are only $15.00 per person. For more information on making camping reservations or purchasing tickets go to www.floridastatebluegrass.com or call 850-584-5366.
TOUR DE MELON
Starting at Strickland Park, Chiefland