2011 Festival

We hope you enjoy these photos of the 2011 Mississippi Gourd Festival!

For more info on our 2011 festival, see the Show Chair’s update below the photos.


2011  A Colorful, Fun Festival…


Miriam Joy’s colorful booth at the festival!

Post-2011 Festival Update from Show Chair:  As Show Chair, I have been busy preparing for the festival and updating the website to keep everyone posted.  Now the festival is over and we’re changing gears.  Gourd festivals are quite unique and lots of fun.  If you weren’t there, you missed a treat!  The Second Annual Mississippi Gourd Festival was a huge success.  It was held at the Smith County Ag Complex in Raleigh, MS, Sept. 17-18, 2011.  The weather was beautiful and it was nice and cool inside the Ag Complex.

While vendors were setting up on Friday, students got an early start by attending early-bird classes.  More classes were offered on Sat. and Sun.–a total of 18 classes over the weekend and a total of 105 students.  We had Make It, Take It gourd projects for adults and children–Lots of beautiful crafted gourds to admire and buy–A huge variety of cleaned, dried gourds for your own gourd creations–Gourd banjos made and played by artisan, Jason Smith– Tools and supplies–Great food prepared and served by the Smith County MHV, aka “Homemakers”.  The list could go on and on.

We had some excellent instructors.  Let us know what kind of classes you’d like to take next year.  If you took a class this year and didn’t fill out a class evaluation form, we’d love to hear from you.  Honest feedback from students is crucial in selecting classes and instructors.  Students, we’d love to see your class projects on our Mississippi Gourd Society Facebook page.  Please include the name of the class and the instructor’s name.  I think people will be amazed at what can be done in a single gourdcrafting class at the festival.  I’ll keep the classes on the website a bit longer so they can be referred to after others see your beautiful class gourds!

We owe a huge thanks to our hard-working Mississippi Gourd Society members and the precious volunteers that pitched in to help.  THANKS EVER SO MUCH!  Volunteer and friend, Bettie Norwood, showed up on Saturday morning and I put her to work in the Make It, Take It booth.  She had to learn and teach spirelli brooches (pins) at the same time and she was great!  She caught right on.  She begged to work there again the next day. That was music to my ears.  She came back armed with some embellishments she’d gathered at home to share.  It takes a lot of dedicated people and teamwork to pull off an event like this.

Thanks to all of you who came to the festival.  We appreciated your sharing your time with us.  Let us know what we can do to make the festival better for you next year.  Come back to see us and bring some friends!

Thanks to Charlotte Graham with Laurel Leader-Call, The Post at Taylorsville, and Susan Marquez for sharing their excellent photos and articles.  See Susan’s blog, www.susanmarquez.blogspot.com.  The name of the blogpost is, “Are You Out of Your Gourd???” and it was posted on Sept. 20, 2011.

Martha vase 2011

Gourd vase, flowers, and butterflies made by Martha Ertle, Bentonia, MS. 2011

See you next year at the Third Annual Mississippi Gourd Festival–3rd weekend in September, 2012, Smith County Ag Complex, Raleigh, Mississippi!

Michelle Thompson, Show Chair, 2011 Mississippi Gourd Festival