Red Fern Festival scheduled in Tahlequah.

TAHLEQUAH – If it’s April, it must be Red Fern Festival.

The seventh annual Red Fern Festival is April 26-27 in downtown Tahlequah and new activities have been added to all of the old favorites.

You can still whet your appetite for barbeque, catch crawdads, marvel at hound dogs, admire classic cars, find arts and crafts, listen to live music, watch the movie, eat funnel cakes, do the cake walk, buy ferns and race a duck. You can also pitch some horseshoes, enter your pickles in the canned food contest and enter a checkers tournament.

“Red Fern Festival is going to be even better this year,” said Drew Haley, Tahlequah Main Street Association program director. “A lot of the things we’ve added will cater to kids.”

The festival begins at noon on Friday, April 26, and festival-goers can peruse booths set up at the park while enjoying a variety of mobile munchies. The old fashioned cake walk organized by the Park Hill chapter of Oklahoma Home and Community Educators returns for the seventh year, and will take place in front of the Keetoowah Cherokee Casino Music Stage at 5:30 p.m.

After some very happy people walk away with cakes, music begins at 6:30 p.m. with Monica Taylor and Don Morris. The Red Dirt Rangers take the stage at 7:30 p.m. and will play until shortly before the movie in the park begins.

Bring lawn chairs and blankets for the movie, and be sure to arrive early to get a good spot to watch the movie about a boy and his two dogs. Watching the movie under the stars will end Friday’s activities, but things start early Saturday.

The festival takes on a county fair feeling Saturday, April 27 at 9 a.m. A contest pitting the best canned foods – strawberry preserves, pickles, apple butter, wild plum jelly, green beans, for example – will be fun to watch and to enter.