Festivals in the area are in full swing and up next is South Carolina's Strawberry Festival in Fort Mill, SC, Tuesday, May 1, 2012 through Saturday, May 5, 2012. Featured this year are some favorites along with some exciting new festival additions.
Enjoy classics like the Strawberry Festival Golf Tournament on Wednesday, May 2nd at the Springfield Golf Club (9:30 am), and the much anticipated festival combo of food, crafts, and entertainment on Friday, May 4th (6 pm -11 pm) and Saturday, May 5th (8 am – 11 pm) at Walter Y. Elisha Park. There’s much for the family to do including the Kids Zone featuring inflatables, pig runs, contests, rides, and more. Ride tickets are $1 per ticket with each ride requiring 1-4 tickets. Friday evening is Kids Night, when your child can enjoy unlimited rides for $15. Also during the weekend are Meet & Greet events with the newly crowned 2012 Strawberry Festival Queens and The Strawberry Jam, featuring two stages of free outdoor concerts. Check here for the concert lineup.
Take part in the 5th Annual Gerald T. Parks Memorial Foundation 5K Walk/Run Saturday morning at the Anne Springs Close Greenway in Fort Mill (250 Dairy Barn Lane, Fort Mill). Registration starts at 7 am and the event at 8 am. Advance registration is $25 person. Participants can also register the day of the event for $30. All ages are welcome to participate and will receive a goody bag and a Gerald T. Parks Memorial Foundation 5k Walk/Run T-Shirt. Registration packets can be downloaded here.
New this year is the Strawberry Festival Gala and the Strawberry Pick-n-Flick. The Gala is Thursday, May 3rd at the Dairy Barn located on the Anne Springs Close Greenway in Fort Mill. Guests attending this semi-formal inaugural event will be treated to heavy hors d’oeuvres, a seated dinner with dessert, open bar, live entertainment and dancing. The gala is from 7 pm until 10 pm. Tickets are $65 per person and can be purchased online or in-person at the Fort Mill History Museum Office, (118 Main Street, Fort Mill, SC) from 10 am until 4 pm, Tuesday-Friday.
The Strawberry Pick-n-Flick is Tuesday, May 1st (6 pm until 9 pm) at Spring Farm, located on Springfield Parkway across from Nation Ford High School. Come out to this family-friendly event for hayrides, food and desserts. Stick around for a free movie viewing of Happy Feet Two occuring at dusk. For a special discounted price of $9 per gallon, you can pick-your-own strawberries during the event as well. Snag enough berries to enjoy these very cool strawberry recipes below:
Fresh Strawberry Pie (weightwatchers.com)
2 pounds strawberries, hulled, sliced (save 3 small berries for garnish)
¾ cup sugar, granulated
½ cup cranberry juice cocktail, or cranberry-strawberry juice
¼ cup cornstarch
6 oz. Ready Crust 25% Less-Fat Graham Cracker Ready Pie Crust
1 cup fat-free vanilla yogurt, Greek-style
1 tsp. lemon zest, finely grated
Preparation: 1) Combine 3 cups sliced strawberries, sugar and juice in a medium saucepan. 2) Mash berries in pan with a potato masher; stir in cornstarch and bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring often, until very thick, about 1 minute. 3) Remove from heat; let cool slightly and then stir in remaining sliced strawberries. Scrape into pie crust. 4) Let cool slightly; cover loosely with plastic lid from pie crust. Refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours (you can then freeze the pie for a little while if desired, to make it easier to slice). 5) To serve, in a medium bowl, stir together vanilla yogurt and lemon zest until blended. Spread on top of pie, leaving a border around edges so strawberry filling shows. Slice reserved strawberries and use them to garnish pie. Slice pie into 10 pieces and serve. NOTE: This pie can be made ahead 1 day but top it with the yogurt mixture shortly before serving.
Strawberry Cheesecake Shake (haagen-dazs.com)
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
½ cup fat free cream cheese (from 8 oz. tub)
¼ cup skim milk
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 carton (14 fl. oz.) Häagen-Dazs® Strawberry Ice Cream, slightly softened*
Preparation: 1) In a blender container, combine all ingredients except ice cream. 2) Blend at medium speed, until smooth. 3) Add ice cream; continue to blend until smooth. 4) Garnish as desired. Serve immediately. Makes 4 serving. *TIP: To soften ice cream, place container in the refrigerator for 15 to 20 minutes or until easy to scoop.
For more information on any of the events of the South Carolina Strawberry Festival visit www.scstrawberryfestival.com. The town of Fort Mill is approximately 19 miles south of Charlotte. For directions, parking and shuttle information, click here. Enjoy the festival!