There has been a lot of talk in recent years about sustainable farming and eating locally-grown produce of fruits and vegetables. Since 1930, there hasn’t been a place where that has been so true than in Plant City and their celebration of the strawberry at the Florida Strawberry Festival.
Florida Strawberry Festival
Every year in March over 500,000 visitors transcend onto the small agricultural city of Plant City, a city about a 45 minute drive from Disney Property southwest along Interstate 4, to celebrate all things around strawberries.
The city may be small but the festival is big, traditionally bringing in the best country acts out there today including country artists Martina McBride, Trace Adkins, Josh Turner, and The Band Perry. The 2016 event marks the 81st year, and will take place beginning on Thursday, March 3rd, 2016 and will run every day until Sunday, March 13th, 2016.
Strawberry Farm Exhibit at the Florida Strawberry Festival
Parades, Midway Rides, Eating Contest, and Animal Races
At the core of the festival is a number of events of free entertainment that range from the Florida Strawberry Parade held on the first Monday of the festival, to poultry, lamb, and rabbit shows throughout the festival, and corn dog and strawberry shortcake eating contests.
Eating Strawberry Shortcake at the Florida Strawberry Festival
Pig Racing at the Florida Strawberry Festival
In addition to the entertainment included with the festival, a large assortment of carnival midway rides are available to ride throughout the festival for an additional cost. The admission price is $8 for adults ($10 at gate) and $4 for children ($5 at gate) ages 6-12 to enter the festival grounds. Children ages 5 and under are free. Promotions on certain days bring the midway price down to different prices that can be found here.
Carnival Rides at the Florida Strawberry Festival
Strawberry Queen and the Strawberry Girls
Each year of the Festival, a beauty contest is held that is made up of the strawberry girls where a strawberry queen is crowned. The strawberry girls and queen were featured on Good Morning America in an article that can be read here.
Festival Queens Exhibit at the Florida Strawberry Festival
Headlining Country and Rock Concerts 2016
Each night of the festival features two or three headlining Country or Rock Concerts that requires a separate admission for each concert. The first concert below begins at 3:30 PM and the second concert begins at 7:30 PM. On days of three concerts, the first concert begins at 10:30 AM.
The 2016 headlining acts include:
Thursday, March 3rd, 2016 – Jimmy Sturr, Charley Pride, Josh Turner
Friday, March 4th, 2016 – Mickey Galley, BIG & RICH
Saturday, March 5th, 2016 – Lecrae, Cheap Trick
Sunday, March 6th, 2016 – Shenandoah, Donny & Marie
Monday, March 7th, 2016 – Gene Watson, LONESTAR
Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 – Dick Fox’s Golden Boys, Trace Adkins
Wednesday, March 9th, 2016 – Ray Stevens, Martina McBride
Thursday, March 10th, 2016 – Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, Oak Ridge Boys, Casting Crowns
Friday, March 11th, 2016 – Tanya Tucker, COLE SWINDELL
Saturday, March 12th, 2016 – Merle Haggard, Charlie Wilson
Sunday, March 13th, 2016 – echosmith, The Band Perry
Concert Sound Stage at the Florida Strawberry Festival
Click Here for the official headlining concert schedule including additional shows earlier on in the day for certain days.
Click Here to visit the official website of the Florida Strawberry Festival.
If you would still like to get a taste of Plant City’s Strawberries but are unable to make it during the annual festival, you can still go to Parkesdale Farms to get your fix of Plant City strawberries and their World Famous Strawberry Shortcake!
The Florida Strawberry Festival takes place during the same time of year as the Central Florida Fair in Orlando.
Click Here to read about various carnivals going on around Orlando throughout the year.
Florida Strawberry Festival Overview
Florida Strawberry Festival and Plant City Map: