Excitement growing as Groves Pecan Festival nears return of family fun

Published 12:40 am Wednesday, November 3, 2021

GROVES — The site for the 52nd annual Groves Pecan Festival had some life to it Tuesday in preparation for the start of the event Thursday.

Workers were seen setting up rides and vendors started preparing their locations for the anticipated festival.

Local leaders seemed eager to get off and running after last year’s event was canceled due to the pandemic.

Groves City Marshal Norman Reynolds Jr. anticipates a good crowd for the weekend.

Vendors claim their spots at Lion’s Park in Groves. (Chris Moore/The News)

“If Halloween was any indication, it will be a good crowd because we had a good turnout this year,” he said. “The weather looks like it is going to be good, too. We will have our officers out there working like we always do.”

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Reynolds plans to partake in the festivities and enjoys a particular aspect of the celebration.

“Anyone who knows me, knows I like the food court,” he said laughing. “That is an easy question for me. I know they have a couple of new vendors coming out this year, and I have my favorites. I am looking forward to that.”

This year, the food area features ice cream, funnel cakes, pecan pie, fried desserts, curly fries, gumbo, hamburgers, barbecue, pork-a-bobs, boudain balls, nachos, pistolettes, breakfast food and more.

Festivalgoers can wash it down with freshly squeezed homemade lemonade and flavored teas. Also, the craft area should have something for everyone.

Ward 1 Councilman Mark McAdams said the residents of Groves are looking forward to the fun.

PHOTOS: Here’s how the festival began

“It is going to be fantastic this year,” he said. “The carnival is going to be great. The booths are going to be great. We have a lot of kid-oriented stuff. The whole city is really looking forward to it.”

McAdams can’t narrow down a single aspect he enjoys most about the festival.

“It is the setting,” he said. “It is seeing the kids rolled around in the strollers and the booths that they have set up. You can order and eat pecan pies, which Groves is noted for. It is just a great event.”

Parts of carnival rides rise into the air. (Chris Moore/The News)

The rides this year are handled by Wagner’s Carnival, LLC.

Carnival Ride Arm Bands will be available Thursday for $25 and for Friday for $30. Arm Bands will also be available for Saturday all day for $30. On Sunday, Arm Bands will be available for $25 from noon until 6 p.m.

Daily carnival ride wristbands can be purchased for the carnival rides for each day of the festival, and are good for only one day, the day they are purchased.

Tickets for $1 will also be sold at the carnival to go toward the rides.

The Groves Pecan Festival Carnival opens in Lion’s Park, along with the craft and food booths, on Thursday from 5 to 10 p.m., Friday from 5 to 11 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

Additionally, there will be entertainment and events that run throughout the festival. Lion’s Park is located at 6200 Jackson. There is no charge for admission.

Home Sweet Home is the theme of this year’s Groves Pecan Festival.

Here’s the schedule of events.