Heritage Day creates recipe for fun with peach cook-off
What better way to celebrate summer than with a rocking chair, a back porch and a big bowl of peach ice cream.
Those who attend next weekend’s Heritage Day festival at the Montgomery Museum in Christiansburg can do just that.
Peaches are plentiful this time of year and are ready to be shown off in this year’s cook-off, a highlight of the museum’s annual festival.
Heritage Day will take place Aug. 25 on the grounds of the museum, which will be covered with events for all ages.
In an effort to feature fresh summer fruits, contestants are asked to prepare their favorite peach dish to be tasted and judged by Doris Fleming, owner of Zeppoli’s Restaurant; Nancy Norton, a peach-loving artist; and Thierry Tellier, owner of Our Daily Bread.
Last year’s cook-off was a great success with about 12 entries, said museum Director Sue Farrar. The winning dish, a blackberry coulis — a thick French sauce — stood out among the other flavorful blackberry bites, including cobblers, pies and preserves.
The winner of this year’s contest will receive $100. Additional prizes in the form of coupons will be awarded. The contest was incorporated into the festival for the first time last year because “it’s much of a heritage thing,” Farrar said.
“It’s kind of like an old-timey fair, doing something like this,” she said.
“And it sparks people’s interest. Instead of just looking at items, they [contestants] could be part of the whole celebration.”
On top of the contest, this year’s event will feature more children’s activities and artists than ever before, Farrar said.
Activities include an animal farm filled with furry critters such as baby alpacas, a calf, donkey, goat and sheep. For those who prefer less cuddly creatures, there will be insects, bees and chickens, too.
Other exhibitors will offer workshops in fiber and basket weaving, birdhouse making, leatherwork, jewelry, glass mosaic, chalkboard drawing, and more. There will be food for sale, including a fittingly sweet treat, peach ice cream, sold by Gardners in Christiansburg.
Boy Scout Troop 148 and Boy Scout Troop 42 will be on hand throughout the day to help with many of these projects.
Olen and Frances Gardner, Kathie and John Hollandsworth, Fort Vause, and the Alleghany Strings will perform. A large quilt exhibit called the “Century of Quilts” will be on display in the museum’s library.
Farrar, who is heading up the festival for the second year, said she has been thrilled to see an increase in children’s events, which are now a major focus of the festival.
“I believe that our future rests in the hands of our children, and I think it’s very important for children living in this community to know their heritage,” Farrar said.
“My hope is to create exhibits that are interesting for children and pique their curiosity.”
Proceeds from the event will go toward the “Raise the Roof” campaign to replace the museum’s roof.
Want to go?
When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 25; judging begins at 1 p.m. for the peach cook-off
Where: Montgomery Museum, 300 Pepper St., Christiansburg
Cost: Admission is free.
More information: 382-5644, montgomerymuseum.org
The Roanoke Times | 381-1679
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