It’s everything blackberry these days in McLoud as the community gears up for its annual festival that draws thousands from throughout the state and nation.

The Blackberry Festival, held each year since the 1940s, began in 1895 as a community picnic to celebrate the end of blackberry season and the Independence Day holiday.


It’s everything blackberry these days in McLoud as the community gears up for its annual festival that draws thousands from throughout the state and nation.
The Blackberry Festival, held each year since the 1940s, began in 1895 as a community picnic to celebrate the end of blackberry season and the Independence Day holiday.
It continues as the longest-running Fourth of July event in the state and offers a wide variety of activities for all ages.
Attendees can enjoy food and merchandise vendors, carnival rides and games, softball and volleyball tournaments, inflatables, children’s games, a tractor show and demonstrations, a parade, a car show, poker run, live entertainment, gunfights, cobbler eating and baking contests and, of course, lots and lots of fresh, locally grown blackberries.
“One of the greatest aspects of our festival is the small town, county fair type feeling that is still found here,” said Jayne Sconyers, Chamber of Commerce director. “Families come out each year from Oklahoma City, Norman and the surrounding areas just to enjoy the relaxed feeling of our event and let the children participate in fun activities without the worry that comes with some of the larger festivals.”
According to Sconyers, the festival draws visitors from throughout the nation as well as some returning to McLoud for the festival they grew up with and some just passing through the state who stop for the attractions.
“Fresh blackberries always draw a crowd, but attendees also can find blackberry jelly, cobbler, wine cake and other fun recipes as each food vendor is required to offer at least one blackberry item on the menu,” said Sconyers. “If you love blackberries and fun then without a doubt this is the place for you to be this Fourth of July.”
The 2008 Blackberry Festival will run from Thursday to Sunday. Hours of operation are Thursday, 5 p.m. to midnight; Friday and Saturday, 8 a.m. to midnight and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Some activities only take place on one day of the festival so attendees should check out the complete list of activities and times before making the trip.
For more details concerning the McLoud Blackberry Festival, visit www.mcloudchamber.com. or call 405-964-6566.